The Association of Multiple Sclerosis (ASBEM) and Virtualware have introduced a new virtual rehabilitation service, VirtualRehab, in a rehabilitation centre in Spain.
Virtualware and the Association of Multiple Sclerosis in Burgos, Spain have teamed up to introduce the VirtualRehab, an engaging new virtual rehabilitation solution, in a rehabilitation centre in the town of Miranda de Ebro.
VirtualRehab combines motion capture with gaming technologies to provide patients suffering from physical, cognitive and degenerative diseases with a motivating virtual rehabilitation service. The solution was developed by Virtualware, a company specialising in serious games and simulation technologies, in collaboration with rehabilitation and neurology specialists.
VirtualRehab is an innovative system that can be used in the treatment of a wide range of disorders and diseases, including neurodegenerative diseases like Multiple Sclerosis, Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s Disease, stroke and traumatic brain injuries, and neuromuscular disorders. The virtual rehabilitation system has nine games that help treat different physical symptoms using customized programs. The system only requires a Kinect for Windows, a computer, and a monitor. Kinect allows physical therapists to track and monitor patients’ progress from anywhere, while patients can be immersed in entertaining training sessions, either at home or at a rehabilitation facility.
VirtualRehab allows physical therapists to design exercise routines for individual patients to improve their posture and balance and to address any movement problems in any part of the body. The exercises are designed as videogames. They allow patients to move from one difficulty level to the next and keep them engaged in the training routines.
ASBEM is the latest of many rehabilitation and treatment centres to introduce VirtualRehab to its facilities. The association’s aim in using the solution is to improve the quality of life of patients suffering from Multiple Sclerosis, and of their families and care providers. ASBEM started using VirtualRehab with about 50 of its patients in March this year.
Begoña Castro, a social worker at the rehabilitation centre, said, "It is as if they (the patients) were playing, but without realising they are exercising at the same time in order to improve any disability. Moreover, it is very easy."