The application of virtual reality technology in balance function disorder after cerebral apoplexy

HONG KONG, April 27, 2022 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — WIMI Hologram Academy, working in partnership with the Holographic Science Innovation Center, has written a new technical article describing their exploration of their application of applying VR technology into the treatment for stroke patients’ rehabilitation. This article follows below:

VR technology is gradually expanding its fields of application owing to its rapid development. The integration of VR technology and the treatment in balance function disorder, compared with conventional treatment, demonstrates explicit advantages in the aspects of life quality, feedback and outcomes, thus offering a promising future.

Cerebral apoplexy, also known as stroke, or cerebral vascular accident(CVA), refers to an acute cerebrovasculardisease lasting more than 24 hours featured with acute or focal brain dysfunction caused by all kinds of vascular causes(including hemorrhage and ischemia). Typically it includes cerebral hemorrhage, cerebral infarction, subarachnoid hemorrhage and other diseases.Scientists from WIMI Hologram Academy of WIMI Hologram Cloud Inc. (NASDAQ: WIMI) have studied the application of virtual reality technology in balance function disorder after cerebral apoplexy.

Virtual reality technology uses a computer to simulate the real world and allows the user to experience the virtual world. Compared with traditional rehabilitation training, virtual reality technology is fun, safe and can greatly mobilize the patient’s initiative, featuring with competitive advantage in the rehabilitation of balance function, thus providing a new treatment for patients’ rehabilitation.

1. Characteristics of balance function disorder after cerebral apoplexy

As one of the important physiological functions of the human body, balance is related to posture, transfer and motion control. From the mechanical perspective, balance means that an object is subjected to equal forces from all directions so that it can maintain a stable state. While for the balance of the human body, it is more complex than the balance of objects in nature. Balance is the ability of the body to maintain an upright standing posture in different environments and to adjust and maintain itself automatically when moving or subjected to external forces, including reactions such as balance, protective stretching, striding and jumping. Human body depends on balance in daily life, movement and work, and the maintenance of balance is mainly influenced by vestibular system, proprioception, vision, as well as the brain’s balancing reflex regulation and muscle strength. Impaired balance is often characterized by unstable sitting and standing, reduced ability in transferring and walking, and increased risk of falls, which can seriously affect daily life and life quality. Statistics show that in recent years, the disability rate of stroke is high, and about 83% of them suffer from balance function disorder, which greatly increases the burden on families and society. Since the improvement of balance is fundamental to the recovery of movement function and daily activities, balance rehabilitation can be particularly important.

2. The application of VR technology in the rehabilitation of balance function disorder after cerebral apoplexy

2.1 Comparison between VR technology and conventional rehabilitation treatment

Conventional rehabilitation methods for balance function disorder mainly involve the use of techniques or rehabilitation equipment for gravity center transfer and movement control exercises in different postures, as well as strengthened sensory input through mirror therapy. While techniques such as suspension, core training, and neuromuscular facilitation focus on enhancing core stability and training trunk control, gravity center transfer, and overall movement function. Neurophysiological treatments include movement relearning training methods, proprioceptive neuromuscular facilitation methods, etc. Although these methods to some extent help improve patients’ balance and movement functions, the therapeutic effects depend on the therapist’s experience and skill level. While for conventional Chinese rehabilitation therapies such as Taijiquan, Baduanjin Exercise and Wuqinxi Exercise, they lack the necessary feedback during training, are prone to causing abnormal movements and injuries. And for equipment-assisted therapies, such as transcranial magnet and balance apparatus, they featured with single movements, lack of fun and objectivity, which make it difficult to mobilize patients’ enthusiasm and initiative.

Virtual reality technology uses computers to synthesize 3D environment models and apply these models to create and experience virtual worlds. It is a system simulation of multi-source information interactive fusion of 3D dynamic visual and physical behavior that allows users to enter virtual space and interact with objects in the virtual world with the help of scene displays, force/tactile sensing devices, position trackers and other devices to create a realistic experience of being there. Virtual reality technology mainly combines sensory interference training and dual task training to enhance the integration of vestibular sensory information and the organization of vestibular center of stroke patients with hemiplegia by adding virtual reality technology balance training, thus promoting postural stability. The study indicated that by combining virtual reality rehabilitation exercises with conventional rehabilitation training, patients’ limb function, neurological function, balance function, as well as their life quality can be effectively improved.

2.2 The application of VR in the rehabilitation of stroke

VR can provide various virtual environments for patients to create immersive feelings and experiences, while also providing technical means for rehabilitation training with key factors such as repetitive exercises, real-time feedback, and motivation maintenance. Through repetitive active training in various environments and movement relearning, it helps accelerate the establishment of collateral circulation and improves neurological deficits, balance function and overall movement function. The study indicated that treatment combined VR technology with conventional rehabilitation training for canoe paddling exercises in subacute stroke patients for 30 minutes per day and three times per week, significant restoration can be seen in the pressure center of standing balance and swing path, with better postural balance after 5 weeks of training, receiving VR training.

For another study in which chronic-phase stroke patients underwent treadmill training in a community-based virtual environment for 30 minutes per day, three times per week, showed significant improvements in limb swing speed, anterior-posterior and overall swing length after 5 weeks of training. The study also revealed that the use of VR technology can significantly improve Berg Balance Scale scores in patients with chronic-onset stroke, improving both static and dynamic balance. Other studies have also demonstrated that applying virtual reality-based training based on conventional balance rehabilitation for 30 minutes per day, 3 times per week for 6 weeks to patients recovering from stroke with balance function disorder, provided visual and auditory feedback, they are capable of shifting the weight of the limb to the left and right side. All these results reveal that patients given VR technology-related treatment can witness a significant boost in balance function and postural control.

In summary, virtual reality technology is a means of integrating visual input and movement output, which can be widely used in the recovery of functional impairment after stroke and is effective in improving the balance function and the ability of daily activities of stroke patients. VR balance rehabilitation training, based on conventional rehabilitation therapy, is more vivid and interesting, and is conducive to better overall clinical outcomes.

Founded in August 2020, WIMI Hologram Academy is dedicated to holographic AI vision exploration, and conducts research on basic science and innovative technologies, driven by human vision. The Holographic Science Innovation Center, in partnership with WIMI Hologram Academy, is committed to exploring the unknown technology of holographic AI vision, attracting, gathering and integrating relevant global resources and superior forces, promoting comprehensive innovation with scientific and technological innovation as the core, and carrying out basic science and innovative technology research.

CONTACT: Contacts Holographic Science Innovation Center Email: pr@holo-science. com

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