A novel use of virtual reality in the treatment of cognitive and motor deficit in spinal cord injury: A case report
14 Dicembre 2018
Rationale: Aim of this study is to evaluate the … A novel use of virtual reality in the treatment of cognitive and motor deficit in spinal cord injury: A case report
Rationale: Aim of this study is to evaluate the cognitive and motor outcomes after a combined rehabilitative training using a standard cognitive approach and virtual reality (VR), in a patient with spinal cord injury (SCI).
Patient’s concerns: A 60-year-old right-handed man, affected by incomplete cervical SCI, came to our observation for a moderate tetraparesis, mainly involving the left side, after about 6-months from the acute event. The neurological examination showed imbalance with upper limb incoordination, besides the paresis mainly involving the left side. At a neuropsychological evaluation, he presented important impairment in cognitive and behavioural status, with temporal and spatial disorientation, a reduction of attention and memory process, deficit of executive function and a severe depression of mood, which was not detected during the previous recovery.
Diagnosis: Motor and cognitive deficits in SCI.
Interventions: The patient was 1st submitted to standard cognitive training and traditional physiotherapy, and then to a combined therapeutic approach, in which virtual reality training was provided by means of the virtual reality rehabilitation system (VRRS, Khymeia, Italy).
Outcomes: After the combined therapeutic approach with the VRRS training, we observed a significant improvement in different cognitive domains, a notable reduction of anxiety and depressive symptoms, as well as motor performance, and balance improvement.
Lessons: Virtual reality can be considered a promising tool for the rehabilitation of different neurological disorders, including patients with both motor and cognitive deficits following SCI.