Archive for the ‘Medicine’ Tag

Nessy Shepherd Recovering from Gallstone Surgery

I was running through my Flickr contacts before going to bed tonight, when I came across Nessy Shepherd’s most recent photo — not of anything in Second Life, but of a specimen jar on a hospital-room table with three “lovely” chunks of calculus within.  Nessy’s recovering from gall bladder surgery, and I hope you’ll stop by this page if you have a Flickr account and wish her a speedy healing.

For the Cure — Breast Cancer Awareness Month

Probably NSFW, though completely tasteful; be ready on the Boss Button.


October is National Breast Cancer Awareness Month, now in its 26th year.  It doesn’t matter if you’re a woman or a man — yes, men can get breast cancer as well, though it’s better known in women — you should know the things to look for, and you should act quickly when you spot any suspicious signs.

Please support the cancer charity of your choice in your area, and let’s help to fight this dangerous disease!  On the Grid, a “Boobiethon” was organized by Her Grace the Lady Eva Bellambi, with better than US$1,500 raised for the Susan G. Komen Foundation.

I suppose some wag out there will shout “Save the Boobs!” at some point; but, in this case, that’s quite appropriate.  Even us pixilated pictures of pulchritude have real-life operators behind the keyboard, and a good chunk of us probably know of, are related to, or have suffered from breast cancer.  It is far from an ignorable disease, which is why the fight is ongoing today.  Jill Eikenberry, best known from L. A. Law, helped raise awareness in the late 1980s and early 1990s with her own fight against cancer; let’s help carry on the battle.

UPDATE, October 9, 12:32 p.m.: We Harpers are of one mind on this; Harper Beresford has written an excellent piece, much more profound than my own little touch here, at A Passion for Virtual Fashion.

MSM Notes Use of SL as a Medical Training Simulator

With thanks to Dusan Writer….

Most blog readers know of the medical training community’s use of Second Life as a simulator for training nursing and doctoral students in techniques.  You can duplicate many situations in world that a budding doctor or nurse might encounter, especially in a RL emergency room.  The only thing missing is the smell.  (Which actually might provide vital clues; but Philip’s Krazy Krew hasn’t come up with an olfactory simulator yet.)

Notice is now being given by the mainstream media.  Discover magazine’s Web site is running a two-page piece on simulators at Imperial College London, with notes from the University of Auckland, New Zealand and Dartmouth College’s Hitchcock Medical Center.  The article gives kudos to the technique from various advocates, noting the ability to simulate many situations (including some difficult or costly to recreate in a more physical simulator room), low cost, and the ability to debrief groups of students following a session.

Does Second Life have no future?  Or is it rather the beginnings of the future?  I’m reminded of the episode of Star Trek:  The Next Generation where Worf is assisting Keiko in giving birth to her first child, following an accident in space to the Enterprise.  Worf is a little ham-handed at it, and admits that he’s only done the process in a holodeck simulator; but I think you can put this down to (a) asking a Klingon warrior to help a woman give birth, and (b) asking a man to cope with a woman in conditions of discomfort the man will never understand (grin).  This is still early days, but it’s working quite well for both Second Life and the hospitals, according to reports, and I think we’ll hear more about these processes as the years roll on.

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