Home-Based Virtual Reality (VR) Treatment for Chronic Balance Problems in Adults with TBI.

Project Type
Independent
Principal Investigator Name
Cynthia Harrison-Felix, Ph.D.
Principal Investigator Email
Start Date:
10/1/2012
End Date:
9/30/2017
Participating Centers:
Target Population(s):
Project Website:
Abstract:
Balance dysfunction is one of the most common and physically limiting issues associated with TBI. Chronic balance problems are common after TBI and present health care concerns because they place the individual at higher risk of falls, leading to further injury and they negatively impact quality of life. There is a dearth of evidence for treatment of chronic balance problems after TBI. Virtual Reality (VR) is an emerging technology that has the potential to provide an affordable and effective treatment for chronic balance problems after TBI. There is some evidence supporting VR as a balance treatment in neurological populations, but its efficacy for treating chronic balance problems after TBI has not been demonstrated. The goal of this project is to evaluate the efficacy of a home-based VR balance intervention using the Xbox Kinect System. If it can be demonstrated that individuals with TBI are able to independently and safely perform over an extended period of time, even years after injury, this VR technology has the potential to significantly improve not only balance, but also the individual’s ability to engage in other healthy physical activities while decreasing their risk of falling.