Drs. Michael Lawton, Robert Spetzler Discuss Dexterity with New York Times

Medical schools in the United States and Britain say they’ve noticed a decline in the manual dexterity of students and residents.

Dr. Robert Spetzler, emeritus chair of neurosurgery at Barrow Neurological Institute, spoke to the New York Times about the importance of developing fine motor skills at a young age.

“The sooner you begin doing a physical, repetitive task, the more ingrained and instinctive that motor skill becomes,” Dr. Spetzler said. “What makes a great surgeon is unrelenting practice.”

Dr. Michael Lawton, president and CEO of Barrow, agreed that the handling of instruments is key to being a good neurosurgeon, as well as the ability to react and adapt when under stress in the operating room.

“We look at their grades and their test scores, their productivity, like writing papers and doing research, but the reality of being a good surgeon has nothing to do with that,” he said.

Read the full story: Your Surgeon’s Childhood Hobbies May Affect Your Health