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||Erren-Wolters, C. V., van Dijk, H., de Kort, A. C., IJzerman, M. J., Jannink, M. J. (2007). Virtual reality for mobility devices: training applications and clinical results: a review. International Journal of Rehabilitation Research, 30, 91-96.
||mobility device, rehabilitation, training, virtual reality
||Background: Virtual reality (VR) is a potential training strategy for learning how to use assistive devices to support mobility. VR is a computer based, interactive, multisensory simulation environment where users can be engaged in activities. There is a need to assess the research evidence on VR and mobility training to determine its effectiveness.
Objectives: To review research on VR training effects and the clinical implications for consumers with mobility impairments.
Search strategy: The authors searched electronic databases (MEDLINE, The Cochrane Controlled Trials, CIRRIE, and REHABDATA) for research studies on VR and mobility training from 1975 to June 2006. In addition, a reference check was conducted for relevant articles.
Selection criteria: The authors included articles that met the following criteria: 1) studies focused on VR for mobility devices in rehabilitation contexts; 2) written in English, Dutch, or German; and 3) published in peer-reviewed journals. Two reviewers independently assessed each study for inclusion. A third reviewer was consulted to resolve any selection discrepancies. The authors excluded studies that did not provide a clinical evaluation of a VR application.
Data collection and analysis: Two authors independently conducted a blind review of each article. General content and findings were extracted and categorized. The authors assessed the methodological quality of each study using a classification rubric.
Main results: The authors identified 411 studies. Eight studies met the selection criteria for the review. Three categories of VR findings are described: training driving skills, physical exercise training, and leisure activity. The majority of studies indicated positive effects; however the methodological quality of studies varied from a poor strength of evidence to a good strength of evidence.
Conclusions: The systematic review indicates the potential benefit of VR training for improving consumers’ use of mobility devices. Several studies suggest that VR training transfers to real-life situations. More high quality research studies are needed to advance knowledge on this topic.
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|Link to Full Text:||http://journals.lww.com/intjrehabilres/pages/articleviewer.aspx?year=2007&issue=06000&article=00001&type=abstract|