Haptics in computer-mediated simulation: Training in vertebroplasty surgery

Chee Kong Chui, Jackson S.K. Ong, Zheng Yi Lian, Zhenlan Wang, Jeremy Teo, Jing Zhang, Chye Hwang Yan, Sim Heng Ong, Shih Chang Wang, Hee Kit Wong, Chee Leong Teo, Swee Hin Teoh

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Surgical simulators and computer games share the enabling technologies in the human-machine interface. With appropriate design and development, the computer-game-like medical training simulator could be used in surgical training. The authors describe a PC-based system for the simulation of the vertebroplasty procedure. In vertebroplasty, the surgeon or radiologist relies on sight and feel to properly insert the bone needle through various tissue types and densities and monitor the injection and reflux of the polymethylmethacrylate (PMMA), or cement, into the vertebra. This article focuses on the provision of a near-realistic haptic feel in bone needle insertion and manual PMMA injection. This involves an efficient biomechanical modeling of bone needle insertion and PMMA flow in bone for haptic rendering, as well as reliable delivery of forces via haptic devices. The authors show that with virtual reality gaming technologies, the surgical simulator can become a virtual trainer for a potentially risky spinal interventional procedure.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)438-451
Number of pages14
JournalSimulation and Gaming
Issue number4
StatePublished - Dec 2006


  • Biomechanical modeling
  • Haptic device
  • Haptic rendering
  • Man-machine interfaces
  • Surgical simulation
  • Virtual reality gaming

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Social Sciences
  • Computer Science Applications


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