Medical teleconference about thoracic surgery using free internet software
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Surgical teleconferences using advanced academic networks are becoming common; however, reports regarding Internet teleconferencing using free software packages such as Skype, USTREAM, and Dropbox are very rare. Teleconferences concerning mainly surgical techniques were held five times between Fukuoka University Hospital and other institutions from April to September 2010. These teleconferences used Skype and USTREAM as videophones to establish communication. Both PowerPoint presentations and surgical videos were made. These presentation files were previously sent to all stations via mail, e-mail, or Dropbox, and shared. A slide-show was simultaneously performed following the presenter’s cue in each station. All teleconferences were successfully completed, even though there were minor instances of the Skype link being broken for unknown reasons during the telecommunication. Internet surgical teleconferences using ordinary software are therefore considered to be sufficiently feasible. This method will become more convenient and common as the Internet environments advance.
Key wordsEducation Teleconference Internet
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