Life & DeathBMJ 2009; 338 doi: https://doi.org/10.1136/bmj.b2411 (Published 12 June 2009) Cite this as: BMJ 2009;338:b2411
- Roy Williamson, specialist registrar in anaesthesia, Leighton Hospital, Crewe
I was 11 years old when I performed my first surgical operation. My hands shook, my incision was a zigzag, and I forgot to sterilise the skin. “Isn’t that the chief of surgery coming in?” asked my assistant—and then the screen froze and I was bundled into a lecture theatre and berated on the dangers of infection to which I had exposed my patient. This was Life & Death, a computer game featuring reasonably realistic diagnosis and surgery.
The player assumes the role of a surgical resident in a fictional hospital and is presented with an array of patients with acute abdominal problems. After reviewing a patient’s chart, the player can conduct …