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Telemed J E Health. 2013 Apr;19(4):298-304. doi: 10.1089/tmj.2012.0055.

Feasibility of adapting a classroom balance training program to a video game platform for people with Parkinson's disease.

Author information

1
Department of Physiological Nursing, University of California-San Francisco, CA 94143, USA. glenna.dowling@nursing.ucsf.edu

Abstract

OBJECTIVE:

Decreased postural stability in people with Parkinson's disease (PD) is a major component of disability. Rehabilitation interventions are therefore targeted to improve balance, mobility, and strength. Virtual environment and gaming platforms can encourage therapeutic activity in the home and be challenging and fun. The aims of the project were to demonstrate the technical feasibility of adapting a classroom-based gait-and-balance training program to a video game platform. Ease of use, appeal, and safety of the proposed games were tested for both clinic and in-home use.

SUBJECTS AND METHODS:

This cross-sectional observational study was carried out in three phases. Modifications in the game platform were made in an iterative fashion based on feedback from subjects and the observations of clinical and design team members. The first two phases of testing were performed in a laboratory setting, and the final phase was carried out in subjects' homes.

RESULTS:

Subjects (n=20) scored the primary "Rail Runner" game 3.6 for ease of use (1=hard, 5=easy) and 3.9 for appeal (1=did not like at all, 5=liked very much). There were no safety issues encountered, and the games performed without technical flaws in the final phase of testing.

CONCLUSIONS:

A computer-based video game that incorporates therapeutic movements to improve gait and balance for people with PD was appealing to subjects and feasible for home use.

PMID:
23540279
DOI:
10.1089/tmj.2012.0055
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
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