Virtual veins? Hooray!!!

You can feel the needle go through the skin; you can put it in the skin and lift it out, you can feel the soft skin and muscles and you can scratch the bone if you put it in the knuckle.

I

fear injections, and what I fear even more than injections is young nurses who practise on my poor veins. I usually end up with arms covered with bruises. But this article on BBC News gives me hope. Nurses will be able to practise on virtual hands with complex vein structure. Don’t rejoice too early, the tactile 3D virtual reality system is not yet in use but might appear in real hospitals next year.
This is apparently called haptics technology. Until today, I had never heard of haptic simulation. Here is how they define it at VICcrs4. While the visual and auditory systems are only capable of sensing, the haptic sense is capable of both sensing what it is happening around the human being and of acting on the environment. This makes it an indispensable part of many human activities and thus, in order to provide the realism needed for effective applications, VR systems need to provide inputs to, and mirror the outputs of, the haptic system. The primary input/output variables for the haptic sense are displacements and forces.
Tomorrow, surgery will be a breeze… ?

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