Physicians browsing Google’s 3D body model for patient education


I am a fan of Google & its products.  Once one of my friends said that Google will take over the world (cyber), better be a fan.  Looking from perspective of mHealth and online tools being developed for health, Google’s Body Browser is just amazing.  We covered the basics of the Body Browser in and its capability to explore 3-D anatomy.  I have been looking for reactions from medical community and would like to share some: 

Likes about Google’s body browser

  • Ability to rotate the body, peel layers to see details of anatomy and ability to search body parts
  • It is user friendly and 3-D interactive model is much better than other 3-D information available on web
  • Physicians feel that Body Browser is excellent tool to educate patients and can easily replace hand sketches to local computer, laptop or iPad screens
  • Physicians like Keith Walker, a chiropractor in England have already started using the body browser  


 Dislikes about Google’s body browser

I would like to categorize dislike as things Google can improve on based on the feedback from medical community:

  • Good for patient education, but does not have enough details for a medical student
  • Available in female anatomy only, though Google acknowledged that male anatomy...

    is coming soon
  • Ability to rotate some of the body parts; for example Dr. Walker noted that wrist of the model can not be lifted, which blocks the view to portion of hip
  • Ability to superimpose certain diseases on the model.  For example, Dr. Ziv Haskal, the chief of vascular and interventional radiology at the University of Maryland Medical Center said “If we could modify or customize to demonstrate certain diseases, the way you can lay your own map on Google Maps, it would be wonderful.”
  • Ability to search parts in layman terms shoulder, calf instead of medical terms 

Google acknowledges that the overall response has been excellent.  I think Google are on right path and as they advance with body browser tool, it will consider customer’s feedback.  If you start thinking about the multitude of applications that you can explore with Google’s body browser, the list becomes long very soon.  We are eager to see the implications of Google’s body browser on medical and patient community. 

Source: NY Times

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