Thursday, February 7, 2019

Seeing A Cancer From The Inside

Image result for cancer

Environmental & Science Education
Nature of Science
Edward Hessler

Video journalist Dominic Smith in a recent article in STAT, reports on one of the first uses of virtual reality technology by oncologist Dr. Ray Mak and researcher Christopher Williams of Brigham and Women's Hospital and the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute in Boston.

More than a year ago Bill Hobbs was diagnosed with mesothelioma, a cancer of the lining of the lungs (commonly associated with exposure to asbestos). It is rare. It is aggressive. Life expectancy is in the neighborhood of a year.

Some physicians are using virtual reality technology in their study of images of cancers.  It improves the quality of the visualization, perhaps because it is so immersive. Mr. Hobbs was asked whether he wanted to look at what the physicians were seeing, images of his insides and the effects of radiation treatment.  He is the kind of person to leap at such an opportunity.  Hobbs exclaimed, almost from the outset "'I'm going 3D, boys.''

Hobbs noted that while It doesn’t change anything in the sense of, am I going to get better quicker because now I know something I didn’t know? Not particularly. But what it does do is show you what they’re doing and they can tell you why they’re doing it, and that’s a good feeling to have.

Smith's reporting reveals Hobbs' optimism and enthusiasm to get on with things no matter the circumstances. In addition there is a video which of this remarkable person and this stunning technology which seems certain to improve understanding of treatment plans.

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