• 4 Tips for Making a Great Surgical Video

    Share Your Video

    Submit a video by Sept. 1, showing a unique clinical case or surgical technique, and you could get to present at AAO 2017 in New Orlean.

    Video can be a great way to share a unique clinical case or surgical technique. Here are four tips for creating an effective and engaging clinical video.

    1. Don’t overlook audio quality

    Audio plays an integral role in any successful surgical presentation — regardless of how perfect the video quality. Invest in a USB microphone, take the time to script your video and record it in a quiet space without distractions. Don’t forget to rehearse the narration a few times, too, so you can deliver it naturally and in sync with the video footage.

    In the video below, the physician provides an excellent introduction and informative commentary throughout using high-quality audio.

    2. Keep it sharp and concise

    Online libraries like the Academy’s Ophthalmic News and Education (ONE®) Network post more and more videos each day. How can you best compete for the viewer’s attention? Editing is crucial. Present meaningful insights near the beginning and be sure to offer compelling action throughout. Focus on the most critical surgical steps to hold your audience’s attention all the way through.

    The video below is brief and to the point, packing in important surgical pearls and background details in less than two minutes.

    3. Don’t rush

    Many surgeons speed up their footage, to cut down on length, but this can eliminate otherwise teachable moments. If you’re presenting a challenging technique or a rare complication, you don’t want to rush. Slow yourself down and draw the viewer’s eye to the action. If appropriate, add onscreen labels and visual cues to help viewers grasp key details. Lasly, don’t forget to let your audience know what surgical equipment you’re using and why you chose it, especially if it’s a novel device or application.

    In the video below, the physician takes his time to explain a new technique with the help of animations and onscreen labels.

    4. Let your personality shine through

    A video is more likely to connect with an audience if it elicits an emotional response. Even if your presentation is only a minute long, there are plenty of ways to set a personal tone — whether it be stylistic edits or humorous transitions in your narration.

    Sound can also be valuable. The Academy discourages the use of music because it can be an unnecessary filler that distracts the audience. But the subtle use of sound can be a great way to provide entertainment value and punctuate your educational message.

    The video below demonstrates a more personable approach, using an amusing introduction to highlight the physicians’ personalities. 

    Need more inspiration? See the winner from last year's video competition. Winners of the 2017 competition will take home an iPad Pro (first place), $500 Academy Store voucher (second place) or $250 store voucher (third place).