Posts Tagged Virtual reality exposure therapy

[ARTICLE] Effects of Virtual Reality Exercise Program on Balance, Emotion and Quality of Life in Patients with Cognitive Decline

Abstract

Purpose:

In this study, we investigated the effectiveness of a 12-week virtual reality exercise program using the Nintendo Wii console (Wii) in improving balance, emotion, and quality of life among patients with cognitive decline.

Methods:

The study included 30 patients with cognitive decline (12 female, 18 male) who were randomly assigned to an experimental (n=15) and control groups (n=15). All subjects performed a traditional cognitive rehabilitation program and the experimental group performed additional three 40-minute virtual reality based video game (Wii) sessions per week for 12 weeks. The berg balance scale (BBS) was used to assess balance abilities. The short form geriatric depression scale-Korean (GDS-K) and the Korean version of quality of life-Alzheimer’s disease (KQOL-AD) scale were both used to assess life quality in patients. Statistical significance was tested within and between groups before and after treatment, using Wilcoxon signed rank and Mann-Whitney u-tests.

Results:

After 36 training sessions, there were significant beneficial effects of the virtual reality game exercise on balance (BBS), GDS-K, and KQOL-AD in the experimental group when compared to the control group. No significant difference was observed within the control group.

Conclusion:

These findings demonstrate that a virtual reality-training program could improve the outcomes in terms of balance, depression, and quality of life in patients with cognitive decline. Long-term follow-ups and further studies of more efficient virtual reality training programs are needed.

INTRODUCTION

Dementia is a degenerative disease of the nervous system, which is prevalent in the elderly population. It involves deterioration in cognitive function and ability to perform everyday activities. As the early diagnosis and treatment of dementia is delayed, its economic costs and burden on families and society are gradually increasing and becoming a social problem.1 Older people with dementia have an increased risk of falls and lower levels of everyday activities being performed due to cognitive decline and decreased muscle mass. This is a result of reduced physical activity, which further deteriorates their quality of life.2 Therapeutic interventions to improve cognitive function and to increase activities of daily living (ADL) in patients with dementia are divided into pharmacological and non-pharmacological treatments. For pharmacological treatment, acetylcholinesterase inhibitors and N-methyl-D-aspartate receptor antagonists are the most widely used in clinical practice.3 However, because pharmacological treatment alone cannot prevent the progression of cognitive decline and ADL deterioration in patients with dementia, various non-pharmacological treatments including cognitive therapy or physical exercise are used as additional treatments.4
Recent reports have stated that regular exercise was effective in delaying cognitive impairment in people with dementia.5 In a three-year follow-up study of healthy older people, a combination of cognitive activity and physical activity was found to be effective in reducing the risk for mild cognitive impairment.6 However, physical activity was found to be more important than cognitive activity in order to further reduce the risk for cognitive decline.6 When older people with dementia performed regular physical exercise, there was an improvement in the mini-mental state examination (MMSE) score.7 Physical exercise prevented the deterioration of ADL.8 The mechanism of the benefit of physical exercise on patients with dementia is thought to be that it can facilitate neuroplasticity, promote injury recovery mechanisms at a molecular level and facilitate self-healing of the brain through its neuroprotective effect.9
However, unless individuals perform exercise in the long run, such beneficial effects of exercise may wear off, leading to impaired brain function and worsened disease.10 Therefore, patients with dementia should continue exercise under the supervision of professional physical therapists in order to stop the progression of cognitive impairment for a long time. In order to achieve this, it is required to keep patients interested in the exercise therapy allowing them to maintain adherence. However, it is difficult to execute exercise treatment continuously in patients with dementia because of space, time, and cost issues in Korea. Patients get easily bored and tired of passive and simply repetitive forms of exercise treatment. In general, 20-50% of older people who start an exercise program will stop within six months.11 Patients with dementia are expected to be more likely to discontinue exercise program due to lowered levels of patience and self-regulation abilities. Therefore, exercise programs utilizing media, including games, attempt to keep patients interested in exercise programs and to improve therapeutic effects. With recent advances in scientific technologies and computer programs, exercise and rehabilitation interventions using virtual reality are being introduced in the medical field.12 Virtual reality refers to a computer-generated environment that allows users to have experiences similar to those in the real world. It is an interactive simulation characterized by technology that provides reality through various feedbacks.13 While performing predetermined tasks such as playing a game in virtual reality, users manipulate objects as if they were real and can control their movements by giving and receiving various feedbacks via numerous senses such as sight and hearing.14
The virtual reality-enhanced exercise consisting of exercise with computer-simulated environments and interactive videogame features allows patients to enjoy performing tasks, encourages competition, and creates motivation and interest in their treatment.15 Participation in a virtual reality-enhanced exercise was reported to lead to higher exercise frequency and intensity and enhanced health outcomes when compared with traditional exercise.16
However, despite these advantages, conventional virtual reality systems could not be widely available for patients in clinical settings due to several limitations including high costs and a large size.17 Therefore, it is necessary to develop virtual reality exercise programs that are easy to follow in hospitals and at home. As an alternative, the use of computer-based individual training programmes is becoming increasingly popular due to the low cost, independence and ease of use in the home. One such system that is increasing in popularity for use in exercise training is the Nintendo Wii (Wii; Nintendo Inc., Kyoto, Japan) personal game, which became commercially available. Wii is a video gaming console with a simple method, as its virtual reality system is implemented via a television monitor. It combine physical exercise with computer-simulated environments and interactive videogame features. Because the Wii console is inexpensive and small in size, it is easy to install or move it in hospitals or at home. This gaming console is designed to be controlled using a wireless controller, allowing user to interact with his/her own avatar, which is displayed on the screen through a movement sensing system. The controller is provided with an acceleration sensor that responds to acceleration changes recognizing direction and velocity changes.18 Wii-balance board is being used when playing a Wii Fit game. It is a force plate collecting movement information in the center of pressure of the standing user, enabling reflection of movements in a virtual environment on the monitor and thus constantly resending visual feedback to the user. Through this process, the user can adjust his/her postural responses. Studies have shown that the Wii balance board can be helpful in postural control training.19 Because Wii is a typical example of virtual reality applications and is simple, inexpensive, and easily accessible, Wii is expected to create interest among patients encouraging them to put more efforts in exercise via games and thus augmenting effects of the treatment.
Domestic studies on the use of Wii have reported its effects on the upper extremity function, visual perception and sense of balance in chronic stroke patients,20 spinal cord injury patients,21 Parkinson’s disease patients,22 and multiple sclerosis patients.23 However, there have been only a few controlled research studies about the effects of Wii on patients with cognitive decline. The present study aimed to analyze effects of virtual reality exercise program on balance function, emotions, and quality of life (QOL) in patients with cognitive decline.

Continue —> Effects of Virtual Reality Exercise Program on Balance, Emotion and Quality of Life in Patients with Cognitive Decline – ScienceCentral

 

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Figure 1 The level of satisfaction about Wii game for dementia patients (Number=%).

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[ARTICLE] Improving executive function deficits by playing interactive video-games: secondary analysis of a randomized controlled trial for individuals with chronic stroke

BACKGROUND: Executive function deficits negatively impact independence and participation in everyday life of individuals with chronic stroke. Therefore, it is important to explore therapeutic interventions to improve executive functions.
AIM: The aim of this study was to determine the effectiveness of a 3-month interactive video-game group intervention compared to a traditional motor group intervention for improving executive functions in individuals with chronic stroke.
DESIGN: This study is a secondary analysis of a single-blind randomized controlled trial for improving factors related to physical activity of individuals with chronic stroke. Assessments were administered pre and post the intervention and at 3-month follow-up by assessors blind to treatment allocation.
METHODS: Thirty-nine individuals with chronic stroke with executive function deficits participated in an interactive video-game group intervention (N.=20) or a traditional group intervention (N.=19). The intervention included two 1-hour group sessions per week for three months, either playing video-games or performing traditional exercises/activities. Executive function deficits were assessed using The Trail Making Test (Parts A and B) and by two performance-based assessments; the Bill Paying Task from the Executive Function Performance Test (EFPT) and the Executive Function Route-Finding Task (EFRT).
RESULTS: Following intervention, scores for the Bill Paying Task (EFPT) decreased by 27.5% and 36.6% for the participants in the video-game and traditional intervention, respectively (F=17.3, P<0.000) and continued to decrease in the video-game group with small effect sizes. Effect size was small to medium for the TMT-B (F=0.003, P=0.954) and EFRT (F=1.2, P=0.28), without any statistical significance difference.
CONCLUSIONS: Interactive video-games provide combined cognitive-motor stimulation and therefore have potential to improve executive functioning of individuals with chronic stroke. Further research is needed.
CLINICAL REHABILITATION IMPACT: These findings highlight the potential of utilizing interactive video-games in a small group for keeping these individuals active, while maintaining and improving executive functioning especially for individuals with chronic stroke, who have completed their formal rehabilitation.

Source: Improving executive function deficits by playing interactive video-games: secondary analysis of a randomized controlled trial for individuals with chronic stroke – European Journal of Physical and Rehabilitation Medicine 2016 August;52(4):508-15 – Minerva Medica – Journals

 

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[Abstract] Virtual Reality to Assess and Treat Lower Extremity Disorders in Post-stroke Patients

Summary

Introduction: This article is part of the Focus Theme of Methods of Information in Medicine on “Methodologies, Models and Algorithms for Patients Rehabilitation”.

Objectives: To identify support of a virtual reality system in the kinematic assessment and physiotherapy approach to gait disorders in individuals with stroke.

Methods: We adapt Virtual Reality Rehabilitation System (VRRS), software widely used in the functional recovery of the upper limb, for its use on the lower limb of hemiplegic patients. Clinical scales have been used to relate them with the kinematic assessment provided by the system. A description of the use of reinforced feedback provided by the system on the recovery of deficits in several real cases in the field of physiotherapy is performed. Specific examples of functional tasks have been detailed, to be considered in creating intelligent health technologies to improve post-stroke gait.

Results: Both participants improved scores on the clinical scales, the kinematic parameters in leg stance on plegic lower extremity and walking speed > Minimally Clinically Important Difference (MCID).

Conclusion: The use of the VRRS software attached to a motion tracking capture system showed their practical utility and safety in enriching physiotherapeutic assessment and treatment in post-stroke gait disorders.

Source: Methods of Information in Medicine: December 10, 2015

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[Abstract] Virtual rehabilitation via Nintendo Wii® and conventional physical therapy effectively treat post-stroke hemiparetic patients

Abstract

Background: The Nintendo® Wii is a simple and affordable virtual therapy alternative. It may be used at home, and it is a motivating recreational activity that provides continuous feedback. However, studies comparing the use of the Nintendo® Wii to conventional physical therapy are needed.

Objective: To compare the effect of a rehabilitation treatment using the Nintendo® Wii (NW) with conventional physical therapy (CPT) to improve the sensorimotor function and quality of life for post-stroke hemiparetic patients.

Methods: The present study applied a randomized, blind, and controlled clinical trial. In total, 30 patients with post-stroke hemiparesis were evaluated. A total of 15 patients were randomly assigned to each group. The SF-36 quality of life and Fugl–Meyer scales were used to evaluate the patients.

Results: After treatment, the only variable that differed between the groups was the physical functioning domain of the SF-36 in the group that received conventional physical therapy. A significant difference was observed between both groups before and after treatment in terms of the following Fugl–Meyer scale items: passive movement and pain, motor function of the upper limbs (ULs), and balance. The CPT group also showed a significant difference with regard to their UL and lower limb (LL) coordination. The SF-36 scale analysis revealed a significant difference within both groups with regard to the following domains: physical functioning, role limitation due to physical aspects, vitality, and role limitation due to emotional aspects. The NW group also exhibited a significant difference in the mental health domain. The results indicate that both approaches improved the patients’ performance in a similar manner.

Conclusion: Virtual rehabilitation using the Nintendo Wii® and CPT both effectively treat post-stroke hemiparetic patients by improving passive movement and pain scores, motor function of the upper limb, balance, physical functioning, vitality, and the physical and emotional aspects of role functioning.

Source: Maney Online – Maney Publishing

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[ARTICLE] The Use of Nintendo Wii in the Rehabilitation of Poststroke Patients: A Systematic Review

Background

To evaluate the effectiveness of the video game console Nintendo Wii (NW) in motor function, balance, and functional independence in the treatment of poststroke patients and to identify which games are commonly used in therapy.

Methods

Randomized controlled trials were researched in MEDLINE, Cochrane Library, PEDro, CAPES Periodic, BIREME, and LILACS databases, covering publications up to March 31, 2014. The assessment of methodological quality was performed using the PEDro Scale as reference.

Results

The 5 studies included for analysis showed that NW can provide an improvement of motor function of the individual, but the data are unclear when it comes to the balance and functional independence.

Conclusions

It was concluded that there is little evidence to ensure the effectiveness and support the inclusion of the treatment with NW in patients with sequelae caused by a stroke; however, some of the studies analyzed suggest that NW can provide improvement in motor function.

Source: The Use of Nintendo Wii in the Rehabilitation of Poststroke Patients: A Systematic Review – Journal of Stroke and Cerebrovascular Diseases

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[ARTICLE] Rehabilitation that incorporates virtual reality is more effective than standard rehabilitation for improving walking speed, balance and mobility after stroke: a systematic review – Full Text PDF

Abstract

Question: In people after stroke, does virtual reality based rehabilitation (VRBR) improve walking speed, balance and mobility more than the same duration of standard rehabilitation? In people after stroke, does adding extra VRBR to standard rehabilitation improve the effects on gait, balance and mobility?

Design: Systematic review with meta-analysis of randomised trials.

Participants: Adults with a clinical diagnosis of stroke.

Intervention: Eligible trials had to include one these comparisons: VRBR replacing some or all of standard rehabilitation or VRBR used as extra rehabilitation time added to a standard rehabilitation regimen. Outcome measures: Walking speed, balance, mobility and adverse events.

Results: In total, 15 trials involving 341 participants were included. When VRBR replaced some or all of the standard rehabilitation, there were statistically significant benefits in walking speed (MD 0.15 m/s, 95% CI 0.10 to 0.19), balance (MD 2.1 points on the Berg Balance Scale, 95% CI 1.8 to 2.5) and mobility (MD 2.3 seconds on the Timed Up and Go test, 95% CI 1.2 to 3.4). When VRBR was added to standard rehabilitation, mobility showed a significant benefit (0.7 seconds on the Timed Up and Go test, 95% CI 0.4 to 1.1), but insufficient evidence was found to comment about walking speed (one trial) and balance (high heterogeneity).

Conclusion: Substituting some or all of a standard rehabilitation regimen with VRBR elicits greater benefits in walking speed, balance and mobility in people with stroke. Although the benefits are small, the extra cost of applying virtual reality to standard rehabilitation is also small, especially when spread over many patients in a clinic. Adding extra VRBR time to standard rehabilitation also has some benefits; further research is needed to determine if these benefits are clinically worthwhile. [Corbetta D, Imeri F, Gatti R (2015) Rehabilitation that incorporates virtual reality is more effective than standard rehabilitation for improving walking speed, balance and mobility after stroke: a systematic review. Journal of Physiotherapy XX: XX-XX]

Full Text PDF

 

via Rehabilitation that incorporates virtual reality is more effective than standard rehabilitation for improving walking speed, balance and mobility after stroke: a systematic review – Journal of Physiotherapy.

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[ARTICLE] Virtual rehabilitation via Nintendo Wii® and conventional physical therapy effectively treat post-stroke hemiparetic patients

Abstract

Background: The Nintendo® Wii is a simple and affordable virtual therapy alternative. It may be used at home, and it is a motivating recreational activity that provides continuous feedback. However, studies comparing the use of the Nintendo® Wii to conventional physical therapy are needed.

Objective: To compare the effect of a rehabilitation treatment using the Nintendo® Wii (NW) with conventional physical therapy (CPT) to improve the sensorimotor function and quality of life for post-stroke hemiparetic patients.

Methods: The present study applied a randomized, blind, and controlled clinical trial. In total, 30 patients with post-stroke hemiparesis were evaluated. A total of 15 patients were randomly assigned to each group. The SF-36 quality of life and Fugl–Meyer scales were used to evaluate the patients.

Results: After treatment, the only variable that differed between the groups was the physical functioning domain of the SF-36 in the group that received conventional physical therapy. A significant difference was observed between both groups before and after treatment in terms of the following Fugl–Meyer scale items: passive movement and pain, motor function of the upper limbs (ULs), and balance. The CPT group also showed a significant difference with regard to their UL and lower limb (LL) coordination. The SF-36 scale analysis revealed a significant difference within both groups with regard to the following domains: physical functioning, role limitation due to physical aspects, vitality, and role limitation due to emotional aspects. The NW group also exhibited a significant difference in the mental health domain. The results indicate that both approaches improved the patients’ performance in a similar manner.

Conclusion: Virtual rehabilitation using the Nintendo Wii® and CPT both effectively treat post-stroke hemiparetic patients by improving passive movement and pain scores, motor function of the upper limb, balance, physical functioning, vitality, and the physical and emotional aspects of role functioning.

via Virtual rehabilitation via Nintendo Wii® and conventional physical therapy effectively treat post-stroke hemiparetic patients: Topics in Stroke Rehabilitation: Vol 0, No 0.

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ARTICLE: Effectiveness of Commercial Gaming-Based Virtual Reality Movement Therapy on Functional Recovery of Upper Extremity in Subacute Stroke Patients – Full Text

…To investigate the effectiveness of commercial gaming-based virtual reality (VR) therapy on the recovery of paretic upper extremity in subacute stroke patients…

via KoreaMed Synapse.

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