A new study suggests that virtual reality and other video games involving motion can enhance motor improvement after a stroke. The improvement seems to be greater than the one observed with traditional therapy.
This result is quite promising since 55 to 75% of stroke survivors experience motor problem in their arms.
The study was a meta-analysis that looked at 12 previously published studies, for a total of 195 patients. Most were observational studies in which the patients used a variety of virtual (e.g., Wii) and non-virtual (e.g., Glasstron) games during therapy. In the 5 randomized studies, a group of patients was assigned to standard therapy and another to virtual reality therapy. Patients in virtual reality therapy had 4.89 times higher chance of improvement in motor strength compared to patients in standard therapy.
Why would virtual reality therapy be more efficient?
It seems that virtual reality therapy stimulates neuroplasticity more than standard therapy. [Read more…] about Virtual Reality Games Help Stroke Patients Recover Motor Functions