French hospital designs bariatric surgery board game

A hospital in Lille (Nord, Hauts-de-France) has created a groundbreaking “quiz” designed to support obese patients preparing for bariatric surgery.

28 May 2019
The game at the hospital in Lille was first created by the doctors in the obesity department
By Connexion journalist

Dubbed the “Bariatric Quizz”, the board game-style quiz has been designed by staff at the CHRU in Lille to help patients learn and understand everything they need to know before, during and after their procedure.

Previously, the information was simply given to the patients during doctor appointments, and was described as daunting and passive. The game has been created to make the process more engaging and the details easier for patients to learn and remember.

Dr. Hélène Verkindt, doctor on the obesity surgery service at the CHRU Lille, explained that patients planning to undergo bariatric surgery do not simply turn up one day, have the operation, and then go home.

She said: “It is a long process that requires at least six months of preparation. All of the patients are volunteering [for the surgery], so we must first check that they are ready to follow it through to the end.

“Then, there is a lot of information for them to acquire, including about nutritional knowledge, the procedure itself, and the next steps.”

Questions also focus on topics such as physical activity, psychology, and physical care.

The game has been used extensively at the CHRU Lille, and a student even wrote her medical thesis on its use and results.

Dr Verkindt said: “Her work has allowed us to see that generally, patients retain this crucial information much more easily [using the game]. The game supervisor can also easily see if there are any patients who have gaps in the knowledge that they are supposed to be learning.”

The first prototype of the game included homemade counters, dice, and a cardboard mat, created by the doctors.

Now, a newer version has been created in collaboration with the University of Lille, engineering lab Lille Fab Lab Polytech, and research centre the European Genomic Institute for Diabetes. This second version includes graphic design changes and pieces made with 3D printers.

It is hoped that the quiz will soon be rolled out to other hospitals and obesity clinics.

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