You need an operation? We need an NBN.

People, please get a grip.

If you have no idea what the NBN is, please don’t comment on it, you just look really ignorant and/or stupid.

If you think the only use for a high speed high throughput internet connection is to be able to play faster games or download movies or porn more rapidly, go back into your darkened room and..err….actually, I don’t want to know.

In our bone and joint laboratories we try and work out how to both prevent and better treat injuries and other joint problems.  Some of us are orthopaedic surgeons (and some are not). Some of us work with test tubes and pipettes, others work with scalpels and drills.

Innovations in surgery these days include optic fibre cameras or scopes (called arthroscopes when they use them in your joints) inserted into little cuts rather than big incisions. These arthroscopes give high resolution real time video feed of what’s happening inside your body during the operation, showing the injured or diseased tissue and the instruments being used to fix the damage. Examples of the sort of images you can see are here and here.

Also available within some operating theatres now are computer simulators, where surgeons can use special software to model the exact shape of each patient’s joint, enabling them to work out the best possible solution for your particular problem. The software makes fully rotational model of your knee/hip/ankle that can be twisted and turned and viewed from all angles. The surgeons can then proceed with the best operation for YOU.

Now imagine the surgeon views your joint and has a number of possible ways to treat you, or perhaps, no way is obvious. One solution he has is to his dilemma is to consult with other experienced surgeons. At present, he can speak to them and maybe, if the theatre computer has the capacity, show slow static pictures of your joint. If we had a faster, higher throughput network, he could show the real time movie of your operation and the computer simulation of your joint to any other orthopaedic surgeon available in the city, state or country, or even show a number of specialist surgeons at the same time. After such a remote consultation, the best possible procedure would give you the best possible chance for a full recovery.

This is one of literally dozens of ways that a high speed internet national broadband network could help us here in the medical world. Please, for the sake of all our joints, help us get an NBN. You may be the next patient who benefits.

About drmmobs

Medical Researcher
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