[Purpose] The purpose of this study was to investigate the effects of game-based virtual reality movement therapy plus mental practice on upper extremity function in chronic stroke patients with hemiparesis.
[Subjects] The subjects were chronic stroke patients with hemiparesis.
[Methods] Thirty subjects were randomly assigned to either the control group or experimental group. All subjects received 20 sessions (5 days in a week) of virtual reality movement therapy using the Nintendo Wii. In addition to Wii-based virtual reality movement therapy, experimental group subjects performed mental practice consisting of 5 minutes of relaxation, Wii games imagination, and normalization phases before the beginning of Wii games. To compare the two groups, the upper extremity subtest of the Fugl-Meyer Assessment, Box and Block Test, and quality of movement subscale of the Motor Activity Log were performed.
[Results] Both groups showed statistically significant improvement in the Fugl-Meyer Assessment, Box and Block Test, and quality of the movement subscale of Motor Activity Log after the interventions. Also, there were significant differences in the Fugl-Meyer Assessment, Box and Block Test, and quality of movement subscale of the Motor Activity Log between the two groups.
[Conclusion] Game-based virtual reality movement therapy alone may be helpful to improve functional recovery of the upper extremity, but the addition of MP produces a lager improvement.
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