Experience the Power of Immersive Healthcare in TBI Rehabilitation by Charles Watson
Posted on August 20, 2022
An evolving technology, VR, represents a new tool to provide TBI care teams with new neuro-restorative strategies readily available at the bedside. Since the late 1980s, VR has been used to describe a 3D synthetic environment produced by computer graphics, in which the user has the feeling of being inside. The REAL System is radically different from other rehab technologies because of its versatility and mobility.
What is the REAL System?
REAL System is an innovative rehabilitation technology that uses virtual reality (VR) to empower patients with engaging therapeutic and wellness activities.
How does the REAL System work?
REAL System combines advanced tools and rehabilitation therapy to empower patients with engaging therapeutic activities that focus on motor skills, cognition, core and balance, functional tasks, activities of daily living (ADL) training, vision, and wellness.
What is incorporated in the REAL System?
The REAL System contains one virtual reality (VR) headset, six grip-less proprietary tracking sensors, and a tablet pre-loaded with the TherapyView app that aids therapists monitor patients' progress during sessions. The headset is light and comfortable. The sensors and their attachment straps were intended specifically for patients with restricted grip strength and mobility. The Happy Valley environment was designed to involve and empower older adults.
Operational and Technical Uses for REAL System
Do I need to be tech-savvy to use the System?
Not at all! It comes ready to use for all physical therapists, medical professionals, and occupational therapists trained in rehabilitation therapy, with an easy-to-follow user manual.
How does it compare to other VR remedy tools?
REAL System activities focus on physical rehabilitation, wellness, and cognition and is designed specifically for therapists and patients.
Do I need to have a VR headset?
No, absolutely not. The REAL System comes with everything needed to start an immersive therapy experience.
Usage and Clinical Information
Can I tailor the REAL System experience with my patient?
Therapists can use modifiable settings in the TherapyView app to alter the experiences to align patient-specific needs making exercises more or less challenging.
Where can it be employed?
The REAL System is useful in any clinical setting by physical therapists, medical professionals trained in rehabilitation therapy, and occupational therapists who supervise the patient's sitting.
How is VR therapy, unlike traditional therapy?
Immersive virtual reality helps transport patients to a creative world of actions that expand traditional exercises and activities of daily living (ADLs) in a fun setting. Patients are transported to an engaging, colorful virtual world that aids them in focusing on rehabilitation in a fun 360-degree experience.
What outcomes are therapists seeing with the REAL System?
Therapists report that patients are more involved, and cancellation rates are down. Patients are excited about using it because they feel they can do more in the virtual world.
What do VR therapy sessions look like?
Supervised and supported by a medical professional, the patient is engrossed in a 360-degree virtual environment as they put on the headset. REAL System experiences, such as Sports Park, are designed to be fun, engaging, and effective for various impairments. Upon powering on, the patient is instantly immersed in VR, engaging in visual challenges guided by their therapist. Highly precise electromagnetic sensors are used instead of optical sensors, which require "line of sight" tracking.
Electromagnetic tracking allows the therapist to be present whenever they need to be around their patient without disrupting position tracking. Thus, creating a more consistent and stable user experience.
The sensors are connected with soft neoprene bands. The patient works in a virtual world with their full-presence avatar within two minutes of set-up.
For its flexibility, sense of presence (i.e., the feeling of "being there"), and emotional engagement, VR has been tested in motor and cognitive rehabilitation, with good results. In stroke patients, the number of VR programs is rapidly increasing, with compelling data showing an improvement in recovery of motor function and daily living activities.