[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Virtual reality videogames can be used to motivate rehabilitation, and telerehabilitation can be used to improve access to rehabilitation. These uses of technology to improve health outcomes are a burgeoning area of rehabilitation research. So far, there is a lack of reports of long-term outcomes of these types of interventions. The authors report a 15-year-old boy with hemiplegic cerebral palsy and epilepsy because of presumed perinatal stroke who improved his plegic hand function and increased his plegic forearm bone health during a 14-month virtual reality videogame hand telerehabilitation intervention. A total of 14 months after the intervention ended, repeat evaluation demonstrated maintenance of both increased hand function and forearm bone health. The implications of this work for the future of rehabilitation in children with neurological disabilities are discussed in this article.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Golomb MR, McDonald BC, Warden SJ, Yonkman J, Saykin AJ, Shirley B, Huber M, Rabin B, AbdelBaky M, Nwosu ME, Barkat-Masih M, Burdea GC. In-home virtual reality videogame telerehabilitation in adolescents with hemiplegic cerebral palsy.
To investigate whether in-home remotely monitored virtual reality videogame-based telerehabilitation in adolescents with hemiplegic cerebral palsy can improve hand function and forearm bone health, and demonstrate alterations in motor circuitry activation.
A 3-month proof-of-concept pilot study.
Virtual reality videogame-based rehabilitation systems were installed in the homes of 3 participants and networked via secure Internet connections to the collaborating engineering school and children's hospital.
Adolescents (N=3) with severe hemiplegic cerebral palsy.
Participants were asked to exercise the plegic hand 30 minutes a day, 5 days a week using a sensor glove fitted to the plegic hand and attached to a remotely monitored videogame console installed in their home. Games were custom developed, focused on finger movement, and included a screen avatar of the hand.
Standardized occupational therapy assessments, remote assessment of finger range of motion (ROM) based on sensor glove readings, assessment of plegic forearm bone health with dual-energy x-ray absorptiometry (DXA) and peripheral quantitative computed tomography (pQCT), and functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) of hand grip task.
All 3 adolescents showed improved function of the plegic hand on occupational therapy testing, including increased ability to lift objects, and improved finger ROM based on remote measurements. The 2 adolescents who were most compliant showed improvements in radial bone mineral content and area in the plegic arm. For all 3 adolescents, fMRI during grip task contrasting the plegic and nonplegic hand showed expanded spatial extent of activation at posttreatment relative to baseline in brain motor circuitry (eg, primary motor cortex and cerebellum).
Use of remotely monitored virtual reality videogame telerehabilitation appears to produce improved hand function and forearm bone health (as measured by DXA and pQCT) in adolescents with chronic disability who practice regularly. Improved hand function appears to be reflected in functional brain changes.
Archives of physical medicine and rehabilitation 01/2010; 91(1):1-8.e1. DOI:10.1016/j.apmr.2009.08.153 · 2.57 Impact Factor