VR (Virtual Realty) is now being used to help patients get moving after accidents.

April 28, 2016, Kitchener, Ontario

Posted by: Robert Deutschmann, Personal Injury Lawyer

Recovery from TBI and other brain injuries is a long hard road. Regaining mobility is crucial to leading an independent life and to long term health. Virtual reality is getting patients back on the road to recovery with some excellent results.

In England treadmills combined with virtual reality are being used to help motivate people through their physical therapy. It can be soul crushing to be standing in a physio therapy room trying to walk along between parallel bars counting the floor tiles as motivation. The new scenarios being used include motivating people to move by projecting virtual scenes in front of them. The person in rehab can, for example, have a forest scene uploaded in front of them and use the path as motivation to walk down the trail. As mobility improves the treadmill can be programmed to react to the scenes with increases in grade to simulate uphill/downhill walking as well.

An article on BBC Radio 4 featured Kenneth Brown, a man who had a stroke 6 years ago that left half his body paralysed. He has been using Caren, the new computer system at the Brain and Spinal Injury Centre to begin moving again. The process isn’t’ simple but is proving to be worth the effort. He is strapped into a harness and supported over the treadmill for safety. He can then walk in the woods, sail a boat, ski, visiting museums, or even simulate driving. Therapists hail the therapy as motivating and far more stimulating than traditional therapies. They allow for a much greater range of naturally based movements winning back balance, confidence, coordination and normal movement.

Of course, this isn’t a replacement for regular physiotherapy but it is a great addition to it. The system costs nearly $1 million Canadian but holds great promise. Patients aren’t afraid to try new things since they cannot get hurt. This is incredibly important in giving them the confidence they need as they recover from injury. The system was initially developed by the Israeli military to help rehab injured soldiers. You can read about it here.

Posted under Personal Injury, Brain Injury, Physical Therapy, Spinal Cord Injury, Treatment

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About Deutschmann Law

Deutschmann Law serves South-Western Ontario with offices in Kitchener-Waterloo, Cambridge, Woodstock, Brantford, Stratford and Ayr. The law practice of Robert Deutschmann focuses almost exclusively in personal injury and disability insurance matters. For more information, please visit or call us toll-free at 1-866-414-4878.

The opinions expressed here, while intended to provide useful information, should not be interpreted as legal recommendations or advice.

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