Doctor, Are You a Gamer?

You read it here first!

Last April, we told you about a study of 33 doctors that showed video gamers make good surgeons, plastic surgeons included. It’s because of all the hand-eye coordination that develops.

On the heels of that study comes yet another, this time of 303 laparoscopic surgeons. The testers (doctors, not gamers) recommend that patients ask an important question before any operation:

“Doc, are you a gamer?”


This is not a shooting or driving game but a laparoscopic surgeon
hard at work operating on the patient across the room. The doc tells
where his surgical tools are -- and what they are doing -- by watching
the screen in front of him.
(Archives of Surgery photo)


Here’s how it all came about: Douglas Gentile, Ph.D., a psychologist at Iowa State University, and Dr. James Rosser, chief of minimally invasive surgery at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center in Boston, compared surgeons who play video games to those who do not. Results? Gaming docs rule!

“The most important predictor of surgical skills is how often surgeons played video games in the past and how much they currently play,” says Dr. Gentile. “So the first query you should make to your surgeon is how many times he or she has done the operation you are going to have. The next question should be ‘Are you a gamer?’” Read more.

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