What could a Wii teach us about DaVinci ?

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Veteran Member

Date Joined May 2009
Total Posts : 2692
   Posted 12/27/2009 1:10 PM (GMT -6)   
Ok you guys, go ahead and laugh, but sometimes this forum needs a little laugh now and then.
In following the thread about a new Davinci in Billings, I began thinking about my Christmas experience.
My wife and I finally gave in and bought a Nintendo Wii. Our adult kids, and grandkids exposed us to this electronic phenomena.  We have resisted all the other games for years.
I began to understand learning curves for robotic surgery after playing this for a few hours over the holidays.
I am a decent ping pong player.  But I am here to tell you, it will take me many games on the Wii to even approach my novice days at ping pong.
For one, I am old.  Many of our surgeons are older after graduating from college, med school, residency, etc. 
Two, I am not experienced in electronic games.
Three, it just requires time and practice to develop enough skill to do what has to be done.
This mayt be an awful example, but when we think of what a surgeon is actually doing in there, I can only imagine that it must take hundreds of times to be skillful enough to cut out a prostate, sew the urethra to the bladder, and all of the other stuff.
For you guys who want to argue that the open guys should qualify as having experience, I would suggest playing with your grankids Wii for a while.  You may change your mind.
Age 58, PSA 4.47 Biopsy - 2/12 cores , Gleason 4 + 5 = 9
Da Vinci, Cleveland Clinic  4/14/09   Nerves spared, but carved up a little.
0/23 lymph nodes involved  pT3a NO MX
Catheter and 2 stints in ureters for 2 weeks .
Neg Margins, bladder neck negative
Living the Good Life, cancer free  6 week PSA  <.03
3 month PSA <.01 (different lab)
5 month PSA <.03 (undetectable)
6 Month PSA <.01
1 pad a day, no progress on ED.  Trimix injections

Elite Member

Date Joined Oct 2008
Total Posts : 25394
   Posted 12/27/2009 1:32 PM (GMT -6)   
I broke down too, this Christmas, and bought a WII as a "house" present, so that my adult kids, the grandkids, can have some modern form of entertainment when they visit. My wife wanted the WII Fit module, so we got that too. So far, lol, I haven't touched the thing. THe others are enjoying the fool out of it.

David in SC
Age: 57, 56 dx, PSA: 7/07 5.8, 7/08 12.3, 9/08 14.5, 10/08 16.3
3rd Biopsy: 9/08 - 7/7 Positive, 40-90% Cancer, Gleason 4+3
Open RP: 11/08, Rht nerves saved, 4 days in hospt, on catheters for 63 days, 5th one out 1/09
Path Rpt: Gleason 3+4, pT2c, 42g, 20% cancer, 1 pos margin
Incontinence:  1 Month     ED:  Non issue at any point post surgery
Post Surgery  PSA: 2/09 .05,5/09 .1, 6/09 .11. 8/09 .16
Latest: 7/9 met 2 rad. oncl, 7/9 cath #6 - blockage, 8/9 2nd corr surgery, 8/9 cath #7 out 38 days, 9/9 - met 3rd rad. oncl., mapped  9/9, 10/1 - 3rd corr. surgery - SP cath/hard dialation, 10/5 - 11/27 IMRT SRT 39 sess/72 gys ,cath #8 33 days, Cath #9 35 days, 12/7 - Cath #10 in place

Regular Member

Date Joined Dec 2009
Total Posts : 154
   Posted 12/27/2009 2:51 PM (GMT -6)   
The wife bought me one also anticipating that i would need something to do if we go ahead with the surgery. Interesting thought on the comarisons to the robot.

Regular Member

Date Joined Sep 2009
Total Posts : 187
   Posted 12/27/2009 4:04 PM (GMT -6)   

I agree with you totally.

When we got wii for my son before, I was very proud of myself that I can do boxing very well. The Ping-Pong, was totally difference story. I can play good Ping-Pong in life as well but wii Ping-Pong is very difficult. The sensor is not working the same as other games, such as golf.

happy holiday!


Worried Guy
Veteran Member

Date Joined Jul 2009
Total Posts : 3744
   Posted 12/27/2009 4:34 PM (GMT -6)   
I can picture the game now. Two Italians, Mario and Luigi tag teaming to yank the prostate out of Yoshi. They swap the plumbers outfit for lab coats. You get power up points the more you do. If you leave any important stuff behind or remove anyting you are not supposed to, you lose points. Lose enough points and you lose a life. Not yours, of course, Yoshi's. You are the surgeon after all.

Another thought, at any given time 10% of the surgeons are in the top 10% while 10% have to be the bottom. 50% have to be in the bottom half, by definition. Why is it every one of us thinks the surgeon we went to is one of the best? Statistically that is impossible. I guess deluding ourselves lets us sleep nights. (You are saying to yourself right now "Yeah but mine really is the best.")
DX Age 56. First routine PSA test on April 8th: 17.8. Start 2 weeks of Cipro to rule out protatitis.
May PSA: 22.6, 3 weeks later: PSA: 23.2.
Biopsy 6/10/09: 7/12 scores positive, Gleason 6=3+3. Bone scan and C/T scan negative.
RP DaVinci -7/21/2009 @ Univ of Roch Medical Center
Left nerve gone, right partial spared.
Catheter removed - 7/31/2009 Pathology report received:
Gleason 3+4=7, Tumor size: 2.5 x 1.8 cm, location: both lobes and apex.
Extraprostatic extension present; Perineural invasion: present, extensive.
No Malignancy in Seminal Vesicle, vasa deferentia, lymph nodes 0/13
Prostate mass 56 grams. Pathologic Stage: pT3aN0MX
Post Surgery Status:
Potency - 12/11 5 months, Still no activity, zip. Using pump daily since 11/11. No effect with 20 mg of Cialis or 100 mg of Viagra. Shots next?
Incontinence - 8/20 4 full pads per day
.. 9/7 3-4 full pads per day (I'm going to try cutting down on fluids. Bad idea. I know.)
. 9/27 2 months: Still 3 pads per day.
11/14 4 months: Still 3 pads per day. 420ml/day, 91 um leak.
12/11 5 months: Still 3 pads per day. 400-450ml/day Experimenting with Nyquil for 10 days: Can sleep through the night but withdrawal is bad. Stopped 12/20.
Post Surgery PSA - 9/3 6 weeks - 0.05; 10/13 3 months - 0.04 undetectable.

Veteran Member

Date Joined Dec 2008
Total Posts : 673
   Posted 12/27/2009 4:45 PM (GMT -6)   
The few times I've tried the various Wii games that my (adult) kids have, I've been pretty much useless. Goodlife brings up an interesting point. Try learning this type of input control at an older age. However, it's only next generation stuff to our kids and grandkids who have used it for games for some time...and, for me, you really have to like it to get good at it.

My son brought over Guitar Hero last Christmas for me to play. To me, it was so far removed from real playing I actually lost interest in it within the first few minutes...doesn't allow for any improvisation LOL.
-Nov/Dec 07, March 08 and Dec 08: Severe perineum pain . Septra/Bactrim for 8 months for diagnosed prostatitis.
-PSA start of 2008: 5.3..... PSA June of 2008: 7.3
-14 DRE all benign or nothing felt
-TRUS Biopsy Nov 08: 5 of 8 cores positive GS 3+3 or 6. 30-65%. Perineural invasion.
-General Health: pretty good, 5' 10", 180 lbs, slim.
-Open RP surgery: May 09 both nerve bundles spared. Bilateral lymph node dissection performed. Discharged 48 hours after surgery.
-Post Surgery Pathology: pT3a N0 MX, extraprostatic extension (EPE), stage III prostate cancer, lymph nodes clear, seminal vesicles clear, Gleason upraded to 3+4 GS 7. EPE within surgical margins. Other than prostate and EPE, all tissue removed negative for cancer involvement.
-Bladder control within 48 hours of catheter removal
-ED ongoing but improving significantly with Trimix at 7 months post-op. Oral ED meds didn't do much.

Veteran Member

Date Joined Apr 2008
Total Posts : 847
   Posted 12/27/2009 5:01 PM (GMT -6)   
We are Wii fans in our household too, have had it now for about three months. It's a good way for us oldies to keep fit and have fun at the same time. I can highly recommend the Wii Fit Plus (comes with the latest software which includes extra games), Wii Sports, Wii Play (often bundled with an extra remote) and the Wii Sports Resort. All great fun!

Games like ping-pong and tennis require a fairly quick reaction time, while I imagine robotic surgery requires a more slow and steady approach. I can see some parallels too with the skills required to operate a mechanical digger.

Wanted: Junior robotic surgeon. Must be good with a mechanical digger and experience with computer games an advantage. :-)
Age 63 at diagnosis, now 64.
No symptoms; PSA 5.7; Gleason 4+5=9; cancer in 4 of 12 cores.
Non-nerve sparing RRP on 7 March 2008.
Two nights in hospital; catheter out after 7 days.
Continent; no pads needed from the get-go.
Pathology showed organ confined and negative margins. Gleason downgraded to 4+4=8.
6-week : <0.05
7-month: <0.05
13-month: 0.07 (start of a trend?)
19-month: 0.09 (maybe)
After a learning curve, Bimix injections (0.2ml) worked well. From 14 months, occasional nocturnal erections. Have "graduated" to just the pump.

Veteran Member

Date Joined Apr 2009
Total Posts : 990
   Posted 12/27/2009 7:35 PM (GMT -6)   
I asked my uro about this analogy and he largely dismissed it (of course he does have gray hair) He said that you are still manipulating real physical tools in a real physical environment. Thus your understanding of that environment was the most important issue. He noted that the robot gave him better vision but deprived him of tactile feedback. He said that the biggest challenge for him was to learn to use visual feedback to replace tactile.

P.S. I suck at video games too
Age at diagnosis 66, PSA 5.5
Biopsy 12/08 12 cores, 8 positive
Gleason 3+4=7
CAT scan, Bone scan 1/09 both negative.

Robotic surgery 03/03/09 Catheter Out 03/08/09
Pathology: Lymph nodes & Seminal vesicles negative
Margins positive, Capsular penetration extensive Gleason 4+3=7
6 weeks: 1 pad/day, 1 pad/night -- mostly dry at night.
10 weeks: no pad at night -- slight leakage day/1 pad.
3 mo. PSA 0.0 - now light pads
6 mo. PSA 0.00 -- 1 light pad/day

Veteran Member

Date Joined Sep 2008
Total Posts : 744
   Posted 12/28/2009 3:10 PM (GMT -6)   
I don't know. My BIL bought the Wii and had my wife and I play. Frankly I found the graphics and motion sensors archaic. But I figure it's a decent first step towards interactive games. But in the end, I see my BIL and his family not playing it once the novelity wears off.

Maybe in 10 years or so, touch feedback will be introduced. Who knows.

Tony Crispino
Veteran Member

Date Joined Dec 2006
Total Posts : 8128
   Posted 12/28/2009 3:19 PM (GMT -6)   
Last year it was at our house that Santa brought us a Wii with the Wii Fit. I posted it here after visiting a VA hospital and hearing the doctors approvals. They had one in each ward and it was fun to watch the seriousness of the older players. i looked into it some more and many retirement homes say the Wii is the #1 exercise machine with bowling leagues and Wii Fit workouts.

I should be using it more but the Wii games are fun and the Wii Fit is excellent! I consider this great therapy for all of us!

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