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Google Glass Medical Pioneers Balance Technology and Marketing

Jacqueline Fellows, for HealthLeaders Media, August 28, 2013

Another surgeon collaborated with Kaeding during the surgery in a second location, and a handful of medical students watched the surgery at OSU's main campus. Live images of the surgery, as well as Kaeding's commentary, were streamed to the remote laptop screens.

Kaeding, who is also executive director of OSU Sports Medicine, is partnering with Nabeel to find out the practical applications for Google Glass. In news release, he said he "appreciated the connectivity" of the technology.

Kaeding is not the first U.S. surgeon to use the glasses to transmit live surgery. In June, Rafael Grossman, MD, FACS, an employed surgeon at Brewer, Maine–based Eastern Maine Healthcare Systems (EMHS), used Google Glass during an endoscopic PEG tube procedure.

Both procedures that Kaeding and Grossman performed were fairly routine, making for an easier test run for future, more complicated surgeries. Both surgeons said the video quality of Google Glass needs to improve. Both used Google Hangout to stream their surgeries. But only one surgeon was on the receiving end of their hospital's marketing machine—Ohio State's Wexner Medical Center.

In terms of showcasing the live surgery event using one of the most talked about tech devices, the hospitals could not be more different.

While Ohio State's Wexner Medical Center promoted the event to its local news outlets and across the country, EMHS did not mention Grossman's surgery at all. There's no evidence of it on their website; in fact the only mention of it is on Grossman's personal blog.

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