A new three-dimensional video game developed by Ohio State University (OSU) researchers should make it easier for stroke patients to receive constraint-induced (CI) movement therapy. The researchers say their gaming system enables the intense treatment to be delivered at home.
The system was designed to immerse patient-gamers in a river canyon environment. The game engages them in high repetition motor practice through scenarios that promote movements such as rowing and paddling a boat down a river, swatting away bats in a cave, fishing, avoiding rocks in the rapids, grabbing bottles from the water, catching parachutes containing supplies, and steering to capture treasure chests. Test results for the game were comparable to those of traditional CI therapy.
"Patients have reported they have more motivation, time goes by quicker, and the challenges are exciting and not so tedious," says OSU professor Lynne Gauthier. The gaming system could potentially be expanded for patients with traumatic brain injury, cerebral palsy, and multiple sclerosis, she says.
From Ohio State University
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