The ‘dermaverse’ is a play on words used to talk about the use of the metaverse in dermatological practice.
The great boom in telemedicine came with the pandemic and now it refuses to abandon us. And that is good news, since new ways of caring for patients can be found without the need to be in person, but giving them the follow-up they need. The latest advance on the Internet has come from the metaverse, which, according to specialists, will become a diagnostic tool in Dermatology in four or five years.
The concept of ‘dermaverse’ is a play on words that unites dermatology and the metaverse. “The metaverse does not mean more or less than the digital world, it is nothing special or revolutionary,” he explains to Medical Writing, Julián Conejo-Mir, professor and head of the Dermatology Service at the Virgen del Rocío Hospital in Seville. This specialist also participates in research related to new technologies and diagnosis in Dermatology.
“The metaverse for us it will be essential because we work with images. It will be important both in the diagnosis and in the follow-up”, comments Conejo-Mir. “In addition, we will be able to see and monitor patients from home, without the patient having to travel,” she says. Going through the consultation as if the doctor were at the doctor’s house “will arrive with augmented reality”. “To this mix of virtual reality and augmentation where you see the patient face to face He still has about 15 years left, at least. But to have it as a diagnostic tool on a day-to-day basis, in about 4 or 5 years we will begin to see it.” Especially in cases in which the patient sends his query with images through the metaverse and the doctor responds with a diagnosis and treatment.
Dermaverse, a world to explore
The metaverse that Mark Zuckerberg tries to create “it’s not a game”, said Miriam Fernández Parrado, a dermatologist at the University Hospital of Navarra, during the IMCASS Academy’s ‘Skin & Digital Summit’ Dermatology congress on December 10. This specialist has seen the potential that the metaverse has for her field and has published an article about it: A new universe in Dermatology: From metaverse to Dermoverse.
“It is difficult to define it. It can be considered the next level of the Internet: a whole world in which we will be able to interact with other users through avatars and live experiences, such as going to concerts, comedy shows and, why not? Go to the doctor”, he commented on the use of the metaverse within Dermatology a few months ago.
The metaverse can be an “appropriate” place where patients and doctors “can talk without interruptions”, but it is also an option for “patients who cannot come to the clinic because they live far away”, says the dermatologist. On the other hand, you can also improve “monitoring of chronic patients”, that many times due to “long waiting lists” they cannot go to the consultation as many times as would be desirable.
The use of the metaverse also It can be very interesting for “pediatric face-to-face consultations”says Fernandez. This is because the enveloping environment can help children relax and focus on other experiences while the dermatologist examines them or performs biopsies, curettage, or cryotherapy. In fact, it has already been tested with children while they are vaccinated. In this case, a dragon explains the procedure and then tells them that they are going to receive the power of the dragons while they are prodded. “The children end up smiling,” says Fernández.
Another option that the dermaverse can offer is that patients with contact dermatitis can scan the products what are you going to buy and they are alerted whether it may contain any allergens that could trigger an outbreak.
Uses of the metaverse for doctors
But not only patients can benefit from the use of the dermaverse, also the doctors themselvesespecially when they are learning (but not only during that stage), since can learn anatomy due to the options that the evolution of the internet will offer. From learning the basics of the human body to seeing tumors and how they should be operated on, this would help many doctors prepare for their daily practice.
However, the dermaverse, like the metaverse, are not without potential problems, as the specialists warn. One of them, for example, will be the hackers. But also the way in which patient data is protected, since it is necessary to maintain the confidentiality about the health of those who visit doctors via Internet. As this new world full of opportunities unfolds, developers will have to keep this in mind. to avoid possible damage.
The information published in Redacción Médica contains affirmations, data and statements from official institutions and health professionals. However, if you have any questions related to your health, consult your corresponding health specialist.