Research Article
Issue Date: September/October 2020
Published Online: August 17, 2020
Updated: August 18, 2020
Applications of Head-Mounted Displays for Virtual Reality in Adult Physical Rehabilitation: A Scoping Review
Author Affiliations
  • David Saldana, MA, OTR/L, is Occupational Therapist, Beverly Hospital, Montebello, CA. At the time of the research, he was Student, Chan Division of Occupational Science and Occupational Therapy, University of Southern California, Los Angeles.
  • Meghan Neureither, OTD, OTR/L, is Occupational Therapist, Riverside Community Hospital, Riverside, CA. At the time of the research, she was Student, Chan Division of Occupational Science and Occupational Therapy, University of Southern California, Los Angeles.
  • Allie Schmiesing, OTD, OTR/L, is Occupational Therapist, Stanford Hospital, Palo Alto, CA. At the time of the research, she was Student, Chan Division of Occupational Science and Occupational Therapy, University of Southern California, Los Angeles.
  • Esther Jahng, MA, OTR/L, is Student, Chan Division of Occupational Science and Occupational Therapy, University of Southern California, Los Angeles.
  • Lynn Kysh, MS, is Clinical and Research Librarian, Institute for Nursing and Interprofessional Research, Children’s Hospital of Los Angeles, Los Angeles, CA.
  • Shawn C. Roll, PhD, OTR/L, RMSKS, FAOTA, FAIUM, is Associate Professor, Chan Division of Occupational Science and Occupational Therapy, University of Southern California, Los Angeles.
  • Sook-Lei Liew, PhD, OTR/L, is Assistant Professor, Chan Division of Occupational Science and Occupational Therapy, University of Southern California, Los Angeles; sliew@usc.edu
Article Information
Evidence-Based Practice / Neurologic Conditions / Parkinson's Disease / Pediatric Evaluation and Intervention / Rehabilitation, Participation, and Disability / Spinal Cord Injury / Stroke / Research Articles
Research Article   |   August 17, 2020
Applications of Head-Mounted Displays for Virtual Reality in Adult Physical Rehabilitation: A Scoping Review
American Journal of Occupational Therapy, August 2020, Vol. 74, 7405205060. https://doi.org/10.5014/ajot.2020.041442
American Journal of Occupational Therapy, August 2020, Vol. 74, 7405205060. https://doi.org/10.5014/ajot.2020.041442
Abstract

Importance: Head-mounted displays for virtual reality (HMD–VR) may be used as a therapeutic medium in physical rehabilitation because of their ability to immerse patients in safe, controlled, and engaging virtual worlds.

Objective: To explore how HMD–VR has been used in adult physical rehabilitation.

Data Sources: A systematic search of MEDLINE, Embase, Cochrane Library, CINAHL, Web of Science, PsycINFO, and ERIC produced 11,453 abstracts, of which 777 underwent full-text review.

Study Selection and Data Collection: This scoping review includes 21 experimental studies that reported an assessment or intervention using HMD–VR in a physical rehabilitation context and within the scope of occupational therapy practice.

Findings: HMD–VR was used for assessment and intervention for patients with a range of disorders, including stroke, multiple sclerosis, spinal cord injury, and Parkinson’s disease.

Conclusions and Relevance: HMD–VR is an emerging technology with many uses in adult physical rehabilitation. Higher quality clinical implementation studies are needed to examine effects on patient outcomes.

What This Article Adds: We review existing research on how immersive virtual reality (e.g., using head-mounted displays) has been used for different clinical populations in adult physical rehabilitation and highlight emerging opportunities in this field for occupational therapists.