For Clinicians And Researchers.

International Conference on Virtual Rehabilitation (ICVR 2011)

 

Use of Novel Virtual Reality System for the Assessment and Treatment of Unilateral Spatial Neglect: A Feasibility Study

H Sugarman, A Burstin, A Weisle-Eichler, R Brown

 

Abstract

Unilateral spatial neglect (USN) is a disabling feature of stroke characterized by a deficit in attention to and awareness of stimuli appearing on the side contralateral to the brain lesion. Some of the traditional assessment tests of USN are simple and quick to administer, however these tests become frequently normal despite the residual evident symptoms of USN. We have performed a feasibility study with a new virtual reality system for assessment and treatment of USN – SeeMe. This system is user-friendly and easy to set up. We found that SeeMe detected USN in a patient who had tested normal on the line bisection test for USN. When used for therapy, the patient found the system to be engaging and easy to use. Reevaluation of the patient after four therapy sessions showed improvement in time to complete tasks and improved awareness of stimuli in the contralesional visual field. We conclude that the system is a potentially useful tool for the treatment and assessment of USN.

 

Keywords: unilateral spatial neglect, virtual reality, rehabilitation