Examining the effectiveness of virtual, augmented, and mixed reality (VAMR) therapy for upper limb recovery and activities of daily living in stroke patients: a systematic review and meta-analysis

Sze Chit Leong, Yuk Ming Tang (Corresponding Author), Fong Mei Toh, Kenneth N.K. Fong

Research output: Journal article publicationReview articleAcademic researchpeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)

Abstract

Introduction: Virtual reality (VR), augmented reality (AR), and mixed reality (MR) are emerging technologies in the field of stroke rehabilitation that have the potential to overcome the limitations of conventional treatment. Enhancing upper limb (UL) function is critical in stroke impairments because the upper limb is involved in the majority of activities of daily living (ADL). Methods: This study reviewed the use of virtual, augmented and mixed reality (VAMR) methods for improving UL recovery and ADL, and compared the effectiveness of VAMR treatment to conventional rehabilitation therapy. The databases ScienceDirect, PubMed, IEEE Xplore, and Web of Science were examined, and 50 randomized control trials comparing VAMR treatment to standard therapy were determined. The random effect model and fixed effect model are applied based on heterogeneity. Results: The most often used outcomes of UL recovery and ADL in stroke rehabilitation were the Fugl-Meyer Assessment for Upper Extremities (FMA-UE), followed by the Box and Block Test (BBT), the Wolf Motor Function Test (WMFT), and the Functional Independence Measure (FIM). According to the meta-analysis, VR, AR, and MR all have a significant positive effect on improving FMA-UE for UL impairment (36 studies, MD = 3.91, 95 percent CI = 1.70–6.12, P = 0.0005) and FIM for ADL (10 studies, MD = 4.25, 95 percent CI = 1.47–7.03, P = 0.003), but not on BBT and WMFT for the UL function tests (16 studies, MD = 2.07, 95 percent CI = − 0.58–4.72, P = 0.13), Conclusions: VAMR therapy was superior to conventional treatment in UL impairment and daily function outcomes, but not UL function measures. Future studies might include further high-quality trials examining the effect of VR, AR, and MR on UL function measures, with an emphasis on subgroup meta-analysis by stroke type and recovery stage.

Original languageEnglish
Article number93
JournalJournal of NeuroEngineering and Rehabilitation
Volume19
Issue number1
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2022

Keywords

  • Augmented reality
  • Mixed reality
  • Motor function
  • Stroke
  • Upper limb
  • Virtual reality

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Rehabilitation
  • Health Informatics

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