Surgical Self-filming

December 23, 2009 § 1 Comment

My sister’s father-in-law is a retired corporate photographer. The last time I met him he told me this crazy story about a guy he used to work with. This guy used to be a videographer, and when he recently was going to have a total hip replacement, he decided he was going to film the operation – himself (photo credit)!

What made this possible in the first place was that he was only administered a spinal anesthetic. This blocked the nerve signals from his lower body, but allowed him to stay awake during the whole procedure. Before the operation he was allowed to attach a remote-controlled camera to the light rig, he had a nurse control a second cam, and a third left on its own – probably with a wide view of the OR. During surgery he controlled the remote cam using a joystick and a small monitor. Seeing something through a lens normally creates a certain amount of distance to the subject, and I guess that’s handy if you’re seeing this (photo credit) and knows it’s your own:

I think I would have found it really interesting myself, but having seen a lot of surgery, I probably would have been too annoying.  “Hey, what are you doing that for? You sure that’s the right artery? Don’t you ‘shhh!’ me. That’s my hip your cutting!”

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