Why Some Doctors Are Live-Streaming Surgeries

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If you follow a surgeon on Facebook, you may have seen their office promote plans to live-stream a surgical procedure. (We've done something similar; in October 2015, mental_floss collaborated with National Geographic Channel to broadcast a live brain surgery intended to calm the patient's tremors. It worked.)And while you may not like—or Like—the frequently graphic footage, there’s a good reason more doctors are providing that level of accessibility.

According to Health News Florida, plastic surgeon Rich Castellano decided to begin broadcasting his cosmetic procedures via Facebook and Periscope in an effort to maintain a larger social media presence online. That visibility, he believes, helps his practice attract new patients and allows for communication that provides for happier current clients. In other areas of medicine, physicians have also been able to use social media to relate key developments in managing chronic conditions like diabetes or hypertension and remain in contact with colleagues in other parts of the world. 

“If you're not an effective communicator, if you don't know how to thrive in retail medicine, you'll have upset patients, you'll lose business, patients give you negative reviews online,” Castellano said. “So like it or not, that's where we are."

Naturally, not all patients approached will consent to having their procedure recorded on video. But in doing so, they might be helping to train residents unable to attend in person. And there’s another perk: One patient who had a brow lift performed was able to watch the footage and catch the aftercare instructions he was too groggy to remember while on the table. 

[h/t Health News Florida]