Technology Assures Deaf Student Learns Surgery at UC Davis School of Medicine

You want me to take the omentum off the transverse colin? thats what you do, right. [MUSIC] >>DR WISNER: The students spend some time on surgical teams and some of that is time spent in the operating room, some of it is time spent on rounds. >>DR KHATRI: But it is a unique educational environment. because you have a person actively operating on and taking care of and performing education. >>DR KHATRI: what are the other important structures in the retro-peritoneum? You said retro-peritoneum? Yeah in the retro-peritoneum table down please [MUSIC] >>AMANDA: I was diagnosed with a bilateral sensoral neural hearing loss at three years old and um it is about a 90 decibel loss which is considered profound and I wear hearing aids in both ears and i compensate pretty well. >>DR WISNER: Amanda can pretty much take care of herself in almost every circumstance, she is an accomplished third year student the operating room poses a special problem though because everybody is wearing masks so you cant lip read and even if you can hear a little bit there is a lot of mumbling that goes on and if you are mumbling behind a mask it is very difficult to hear. >>DR KHATRI: A little more towards the colin, yeah [MUMBLING] >>AMANDA: Oh I was thinking ahead and dreading it at that point not really knowing what kind of um accommodations I would be able to use in the OR. [MUSIC] >>DR WISNER: Amanda came up with the idea, she had heard about it from another institution this notion of being in the operating room and having somebody listen to what the doctor was saying and write it down so you could read it off a screen. Then she said well I’m going to do surgery, why cant we do it here? >>AMANDA: its much like a court reporter. They have a stenograph and type everything word for word. >>DR KHATRI ON INTERCOM: Ok now feel for the marginal pulse. >>AMANDA: We are using the internet as a live communication between where they are and the OR. >>DR KHATRI: You take that off, then you can see the splenic flecture. >>AMANDA: The main thing that I use if for is when they are quizzing us in the middle of the procedure, especially questions about anatomy. >>DR KHATRI: We sort of asking them questions, you know what is this you know anatomically. Amanda, they talk about a line on the lateral aspect of the bowel Do you know what that line is called? [MUSIC] >>AMANDA: At other points there will be commands like hold this retractor or cut this suture. >>DR KHATRI: So Amanda what you’ve got to do is at times open up one of the ports. See that, air, air one? [MUSIC] >>DR KHATRI: They are going to be our future physicians or even surgeons so They need to do certain portions like doing suturing as well. >>AMANDA: I am able to actively participate in the surgery which makes it of course more interesting. I use visual cues. A lot of times there are posture changes, their hand changes, theres a pause so I’m like well I better look at the screen or I better look at the field. It’s really a visual game. >>DR KHATRI: What I wanted to do was not think differently so that her experience would be no different than any other student. >>AMANDA: Deaf people are visual learners by nature so it is nice to be able to take part in something that kind of uses our strengths. >>DR KHATRI: If she had the motivation we have to bring in the means. >>DR WISNER: We have a variety of different medical students with different interests, different backgrounds, different disabilities etc and the point is to provide them with a roughly similar experience. Who knows, Amanda may decide she wants to be a surgeon and if we said well she can’t hear so she can’t go to the operating room well then the experience that she’d have would be inferior to the experience that all the other hearing students would have and that is just not right. >>DR KHATRI: UC Davis is a very diverse institution and what we want to do is make sure that those needs are addressed and what better example than what we are doing right now [MUSIC]


  1. FANTASTIC. Thanks so much for this special video with quality cc too. We invite you all, and we mean ALL to join the CCAC and help us tell the world. Remote CART is so much needed in so many places for so many millions of us, all ages.
    Lauren/CCAC/all volunteers, free membership; google the Collaborative for Communication Access via Captioning, the place to be for captioning advocacy (and that means CART too)

  2. I'm so happy Amanda got this opportunity and I'm so proud of my sister Denise who's Captioning business had the opportunity to help Amanda with her classes.

  3. Question please: a friend in the UK can click on that 4th icon (small box, middle of icons on lower right) and see also an "interactive captioning" for this video (along with full quality cc). Can someone tell me if this works in the USA? if so – how to activate it? (Interactive captioning is when there is also a rolling transcript, and one can click on any word, and that takes you to that section of the transcript). Best, LS/CCAC

  4. @siglmgga Yup. I see it here in the US. To activate the interactive transcript you just have to upload your own version of a transcript. It doesn't work for automatically generated captions.

  5. Can we find out where the student is today and wish her the best? Renewed interest in access for medical education, and also all healthcare, with access via captioning. Anyone know? ls (collaborative for communication access via captioning, google us)

  6. For everyone who has asked for an update on Amanda, we have posted a link at the bottom of the original video description. We know you join us in wishing her a successful fourth year in medical school!

  7. We now just need access please with quality captioning – look at the quality of the automatic cc on the new video (not good) – thanks if you can update that soon. Great to have this for so many of us with hearing loss and passionate about captioning inclusion creating inclusion! cheers, ls/ccacaptioning

  8. please see comment above about including quality video captioning here also so we can tune in to this update…

  9. Video captioning was added the day after we posted the video. We apologize for not having it originally and our delayed response to your message.

  10. 100 hard of hearing and Deaf became doctor in USA. Some of Deaf wear cohlear implant and other guy sign language in surgery during knee surgery. Amazing to learn about her ability to dealing what is the surgery was about. Amazing!! 

  11. if i needed surgery I would have every confidence in a deaf surgeon because deaf people in many ways are better educated. they usually sit at the front of the class to lipread and thus pick up more. Also a lifetime of sign language would give a person much better control of their hand and eye coordination. Very likely a deaf surgeon could pick things up that a hearing doctor might miss and thus would be an asset rather than a liability.

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