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Virtual Reality Applications in Clinical Medicine

Virtual Reality Applications in Clinical Medicine

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by Bryan P. Bergeron, M.D.
Virtual reality, the use of computational methods to present users with a multimedia environment that simulates reality, is becoming a practical, affordable technology for the teaching and practice of clinical medicine. Although limited-fidelity virtual reality systems have been used in medical education for decades, modern, high-fidelity virtual reality systems have practical applications in areas ranging from psychiatry to surgical planning and telemedicine. Factors that limit widespread use of virtual reality in medicine include a lack of standards for the re-purposing and sharing of system components and the resultant low return on investment from custom systems.