Tele-Rehabilitation with Virtual Reality: A Case Report on the Simultaneous, Remote Training of Two Patients with Parkinson Disease.
American journal of physical medicine & rehabilitation. 2021;(5):435-438
ABSTRACT Physical training in Parkinson disease improves motor performance, alleviates nonmotor symptoms, and enhances cognition and quality of life. Nonetheless, adherence to exercise is low and travel costs and time may limit participation and compliance. Training at home can help avoid these burdens and, as needed during the recent global pandemic (COVID-19), reinforce social distancing and reduce the risk of infection. However, training at home requires motivation and self-control and telerehabilitation is time-consuming for both patient and therapist. In recent years, there is growing use of virtual reality and exergaming to increase motivation and adherence for exercising with evidence of improvements in mobility and balance after using virtual reality in the clinic. Here, a novel telerehabilitation training program using a treadmill-virtual reality system for simultaneous training of two patients with Parkinson disease in their homes is described. Remote monitoring software enabled visual and auditory communication with the two patients, allowing the trainer to adapt the settings remotely and provide feedback. Participants received weekly training sessions over 1 yr. The findings show high adherence to training, increased walking duration throughout the sessions, and increased patient confidence, gait speed, and mobility. Training multiple participants simultaneously was feasible, enabling an individualized treatment approach while conserving therapist time.
Digital Therapeutics in Parkinson's Disease: Practical Applications and Future Potential.
Journal of Parkinson's disease. 2021;(s1):S95-S101
Digital therapeutics, treatments delivered remotely and enabled by modern technology, facilitate the provision of personalized, evidence-based, interdisciplinary interventions to manage the complexities associated with Parkinson's disease. In the context of the COVID-19 pandemic, the need for digital therapeutics has arguably never been greater. However, despite new advances in technology and a heightened interest due to the pandemic, digital therapeutics remain underdeveloped and underutilized. In this paper, we briefly review practical applications and emerging advances in digital therapeutic platforms that target motor and non-motor signs and healthy lifestyle behaviors such as regular exercise, a healthful diet and optimal sleep hygiene habits. Future applications which could transform personalized self-management and patient care are presented. Opportunities, drawbacks and barriers to access are discussed.