Department Seminar

Simulation of human tissues for training in healthcare: beyond smoke and mirrors

Speaker Details:

Robert M. Sweet
Professor of Urology and Medical Director of Kidney Stone Programs, Executive Director of WISH, WWAMI Institute for Simulation in Healthcare
UW Medicine

Lecture Details:

February 2, 2017
12:30 p.m. - 1:20 p.m.
Foege N130A, Wallace H. Coulter Seminar Room


Medical errors is the 3rd leading cause of death in the United States. The use of simulators to help train individuals and teams both technical and nontechnical skills is growing. Poor tissue fidelity is a gap present in today’s synthetic and virtual simulation systems that has limited its applicability in certain healthcare sectors.

In collaboration with the Army Research Laboratory, our multidisciplinary and multi-institutional team is taking a systematic approach towards building a database of mechanical, electrical, thermal and optical human tissue properties. This data should help build more accurate synthetic and virtual systems for training and assessment of skills, improve the accuracy of predictive models of human tissue interactions and help facilitate the medical device design and development cycle.

Speaker Bio:

Dr. Robert Sweet received his medical degree (alpha omega alpha) from the University of Minnesota in 1997. After a urology residency at the University of Washington in 2003, he became Attending Physician/Acting Assistant Professor of Urology and held a 2-year Health Policy Scholarship focused on Simulation Sciences from the American Foundation for Urological Diseases (AFUD). In 2004, Dr. Sweet cofounded the Institute for Surgical and Interventional Simulation (ISIS) at the University of Washington. Dr. Sweet was an Associate Professor of Urology at the University of Minnesota, directed the Medical School’s Simulation Programs and the Kidney Stone Program.

Dr. Sweet is currently a Professor of Urology at the University of Washington, focusing on endourology, with a clinical emphasis on kidney stones and diseases of the prostate. He is Medical Director of the UW Medicine Kidney Stone Center at Northwest Hospital, Executive Director for the WWAMI Institute for Simulation in Healthcare and Director for the Center for Research in Simulation Technologies. He is Principal Investigator of numerous simulation research and development projects. Dr. Sweet has leadership positions in the area of simulation and education within the American College of Surgeons, the Endourological Society, and the American Urological Association.