Dr. M.M. Zameer
Consultant Pediatric Laparoscopic and Robotic Surgeon
We live in a world full of technology and, for many of us, our children understand it better than we do. Parents may feel pressured by their children to provide them with a cell phone at an early age, but aren’t sure when children are actually ready for this responsibility.
On one side, there are many benefits of mobile phones like ability to communicate in emergencies, social contact, gain knowledge and most of all entertainment. But on the other hand, there are definitely major harmful effects like medical issues, affects the visual acuity (need for specs), headaches, sleep deprivation, inappropriate media and so on.
I will not get into the debate on the pros and cons of a mobile phone. But would like to bring out the use of mobile phone in the hospitals to keep children happy and quiet (used by parents and doctors).
Here is a child posted for surgery. Has to be kept NPO (empty stomach) prior to the surgery. Parents keep the hungry baby happy and quiet with a mobile.
Here is a baby in the operation theatre, very happy (even with strangers), as there is a mobile to keep him entertained. Used by the sister and anesthetist just to keep the baby happy prior to anasthesia.
One day when I went to the wards to see my patient after a major surgery, I saw something hanging in front of the baby. The baby was hooked onto it, very comfortable, no discomfort of the major surgery done in the abdomen. It was a mobile showing a cartoon show.
My primary concern as a pediatric surgeon is the comfort of my patients (kids). If a mobile keeps them quiet even in a totally different environment (hospital), makes them forget all their post operative pain, maybe :