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18/feb/2021

Virtual reality is emerging as a novel and effective non-pharmacologic therapy for pain, and there is growing interest to use VR in the acute hospital setting. Traditionally, opiod was the key for pain reliving and while it was very effective it also had many side-effects associated with it like nausea, dizziness & sedation among others. These adverse prolong the duration of patient’s stay in the hospital, increased cost of healthcare and a significant decrease in patient’s satisfaction.

Therefore, it has now become vital to search for non-pharmacologic treatments that contribute to the efficacy of overall pain management. This is where virtual reality comes into play, by creating a computer-generated sitmulation which can be explored and interacted by the users. In a recent study it was found that 65% of hospitalized patients receiving a VR experience achieved a clinically significant pain response vs. 40% of controls watching a relaxation video. VR can complement a lower dose of pain medication or will eliminate the need for medicine altogether for some patients, which will reduce the expenditure on opiods and other pain killng mechanisms.

The SyncVR-Relax & Distract explore virtual reality (VR) as a distraction intervention during treatment processes. Our systems not only cut the dependence of patients on pain reliving medications but are also affordable, lightweight, smaller and comfortable. Many use a smartphone for the display and hardware, which track the patients movements to analyze their improvement while giving the caregiver total control over what their paitents see.

VR applications can teach people to manage their pain in the real world. It can train and convince a person that they have governance over their body and their experience. It demonstrates that the brain’s response to injuries can be manipulated in a positive way.


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15/feb/2021

Virtual reality is an accessible tool for supporting student engagement. It has the potential to encourage independent learning, appeal to different learning approaches, improve self-confidence, and is a form of active learning. Nursing instructors are leading the charge when it comes to adopting new educational technologies, and now, as educational programs of all types pivot to remote learning, nursing students have the advantage of leveraging digital simulation platforms designed for use outside of a traditional classroom. These platforms include hundreds of real-life scenarios and teach electronic health record use — offer a lifeline, often via a laptop or tablet. Virtual sessions could cover proper use of protective gear, for instance, or how to calm an aggressive patient.

Benefits of VR Simulated Training Programs for Nurses

Nursing education puts theory into practice. During clinical practice, nursing students make medication errors and have difficulty deciding on what interventions to perform in unusual situations and communicating with patients or other healthcare professionals. Virtual reality simulations show nursing students what it is like to be in a real-world clinical setting and what problems and risks they may encounter there, and thus, helps them develop skills, build confidence, and prepare for clinical practice. Students participating in VR simulations are more likely to become comfortable, confident, and successful in real clinical settings because they learn in an applied format. It also provides them with the opportunity to practice whenever and how often they want in safe and realistic environments without fear of making mistakes and harming patients while learning at their own pace.

Infections are the most common cause of death in hospitals. VR simulations can be used to help nurses develop positive attitudes towards hygiene, resulting in a reduction in the rate of infections. Simulation scenarios raised students’ awareness of hand hygiene and reduced the incidence of infection by creating more awareness about the problems caused due to decontamination.

All healthcare professionals should have effective communication skills to ensure the optimum paitent care. A lack of communication leads to missing patient data and poor planning, which may result in misdiagnosis and inappropriate treatment.VR simulations that can talk enable students to cooperate and make accurate and rapid clinical decisions.

Students who have developed fundamental nursing skills in virtual environments are likely to feel more comfortable and confident and minimize the harm that may result from interventions in real clinical settings.


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10/feb/2021

Virtual Reality is being used an emerging treatment for post-stoke rehabilitation. The benefits of VR includes easy adaptability, real time feedback and the ability to recreate life like situations in a safe and controlled environment, while the gaming part of VR is fun, interactive and engaging. Combined together VR rehabilitation is gaining immense popularity by enabling intense and repetitive training while providing entertainment to the patients. Recent studies have shown that VR could promote lower limb movement and restore balance ability for people who suffered stroke or Parkinson’s disease or children with cerebral palsy.

Generally, balancing the body is thought to be achieved by the coordination of three major systems, including visual, vestibular and proprioceptive sensation. Previous studies have shown that the prefrontal cortex is one of the most important brain areas in controlling human balance. By using a virtual environment to train the eye-head movement, balance in older people can be improved and occupational falls are minimised.

We at SyncVR have recognised this key aspect of VR and used it to create SyncVR Fit- an application that facilitates body movements for the purpose of physiotherapy, geriatric and post-IC rehabilitation for all age groups. It form an active engagement with the patients by allowing them to experience fun, positive emotions. SyncVR Fit has game-like exercises like blocking balls from the goalpost in a virtual gym or trying to collect different fruits. Using exercises in this form not only enhances the psychological benefits of exercise but also increases the likelihood of long-term adherence to exercises.

 


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09/feb/2021

Being a human comes with all sorts of baggage, oftentimes dealing with emotions that cloud our judgments on a daily basis. However there is only so much that a person can bear, like debt that accumulates over time. Sweating, trembling, giddiness- when the stress levels increase so much as to hinder our mundane activities it means you’ve crossed into the health burdening territory of anxiety.

The prevalence of anxiety disorders across the world varies from 2.5 to 7 percent by country. Globally an  estimated 284 million people experienced an anxiety disorder, making it the most prevalent mental health or neuro-developmental disorder. Social anxiety often stems from teen years and has variety of factors.These might include genetic problems, personality {being innately shy} or life problems {any violent experience}. Most people experience these symptoms of social anxiety during confrontational or attention-drawing situations. There exists a constant underlying fear of embarrassment, criticism rejection and most importantly failure. Unfortunately these implications are extended into almost all aspects of life like Public speaking at an occasion to a job interview or simply ordering food from the restaurant.

Fortunately for every problem there is a solution or at-least a solution in progress. Before using virtual reality as an avenue for treatment, non-exposure therapies were used to activate the fear that the patients felt would conjure anxiety for them. But these methods had certain limitations for example, imaginal exposure wherein a patient imagines the stimuli that triggers anxiety-instilling fear. However, the it was difficult for the doctor to know and understand what the patient has actually imagines.

Virtual reality helps bridge this gap while having the same goal: Patients learn how to overcome anxiety by replacing it with relaxation. Therapists can now use VR to help their patients maneuver difficult situations. But what VR does differently is, it creates real life situations in an environment that can be seen and controlled by the therapists. It this element of control that sets VR apart from other modes of therapy and is also the driving force behind its popularity. The extent of use of VR in anxiety treatment is also modified by its ability to be used remotely from anywhere without actually leaving the office. . The sole purpose of VR is to recreate a vivd representation of the world we actually live so that the feeling of actually being present there is real.

 


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04/feb/2021

Just sometime ago, the concept of virtual reality was limited to incorporating it only within the gaming industry and the mere thought of using it for medical purposes seemed like a futuristic dream. But today, these advanced tools are being used in clinics and hospitals across the world as a mode of visualization. The scope of using virtual reality has no limits, from teaching & training new medical professionals to helping physicians scrutinise their diagnosis more closely, the list is never ending.

Let’s look at some of the top uses:

1. Surgery

There has been tremendous technological advancements in the medical field. But training the existing and prospective healthcare professionals is still done by the books in the same old fashioned way i.e using books, exams, tests. Even the practical experience is gained in specialized centers that need constant supervision, maintenance and not to forget artificial body parts. Virtual Reality helps in making this environment much more controlled and can easily stimulate practice session using high quality graphics and sounds. It is the best way to recreate real life scenarios without actually risking a patient’s life and allows professionals to make mistakes, learn from them and explore new techniques that is normally difficult to do.

top uses of VR

2. Pain Management

Virtual Reality shouldn’t just be seen as a way to distract paitents when they are experiencing acute pain, beacuse numerous studies have shown that the pain can be diminished in real time by reliving pain from the signals that are sent to the brain. Melzack and Wall proposed the Gate Control Theory , which suggests that factors such as the level of attention paid to the pain, the emotion associated with the pain and past experience of the pain all play a role in how the pain will be interpreted. They also state that human mind has a short attention span and if distracted appropriately the feeling of pain will be less intense.

3. Physical Therapy and Rehabilitation.

A few years back Microsoft Kinect was launched with motion sensors that had gesture recognition and motion tracking capabilities that could generate and collect real time data of a person for a cerain period of time. Virtual Reality takes a step further by making the experience much more immersive and fun so that patients unknowingly perform exercises. Diguised skillfully as game or a creative activity and with added goals to complete the game it instructs paitents to move their arms, shoulders and legs to facilitate full range of body movements. Doctors and physicians can later use the data generated to analyze the improvement and also change certain parameters that benefits their paitents.

4. Phobia Treatment.

Physicians and pyschologists around the world for some time now have advocated for exposure therapy i.e forcing paitents to face their worst fears. Virtual Reality combined with cognitive behavior works as an aid to help people overcome their fears. It can create a stimulated environment in real world and helps to overcome certain fears like fear of spiders, height, water etc in a safe and controlled environment.

5. Stress Relief.

A general wellness use case is to create immersive, relaxing environments to promote meditation and reduce stress. Various breathing mechanisms can be deployed along with a voice-over instructions and scenic views to help relax a person’s mind.

 


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