Using virtual reality to increase exercise capacity of heart failure patients
2013 (English)Conference paper, Presentation (Other academic)
Purpose Exercise is an important self-care behaviour and is related to decreased mortality in heart failure (HF). There are several barriers for HF patients to start exercising in conventional ways (rehabilitation center, fitness club).Virtual reality might be a solution to increase exercise at home. The Wii, a video game console made by Nintendo, uses virtual reality to increases the possibilities to exercise. The aim of this study was to assess change in exercise capacity in HF patients using the Wii game console at home for 12 weeks and examine factors related to this change.
Methods The Wii was installed in the home of 32 HF patients (age 64 ± 14 years, 10 female, 68% NYHA II) for a period of 12 weeks. At baseline and at 12 weeks the patients performed the 6-minute walking test (6MWT) to assess physical capacity and completed a questionnaire concerning exercise self-efficacy and exercise motivation. Patients also completed a diary about the amount of minutes playing on the Wii, HF symptoms and perceived exertion.
Results At baseline patients walked on the 6MWT a mean distance of 500 (±93) meters and at 12 weeks this had increased to 521 (±101) meters. More than half of the patients (n=17) had a clinically significant improvement of 30 meters or more and 9 patients (28%) decreased the amount of meters walked. One patient (3%) increased in the amount of meters but less than 30 meters. Patients who increased the amount of meters during 6MWT had a significant lower NYHA class. No associations were found between change in meter walked and the amount of minutes played on the Wii, the perceived exertion, or HF symptoms
Conclusion Virtual reality in the rehabilitation of HF patients is a new innovative method to increase activity. More than half of the patients in this pilot study achieved a clinically relevant increase in exercise capacity due to access to the Wii at home for 12 weeks. Patients with a lower functional class at baseline seemed to benefit the most using the Wii.
Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
None , 2013.
IdentifiersURN: urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-121601OAI: oai:DiVA.org:liu-121601DiVA: diva2:857205
The third European Conference on Games for Health Europe, 28-29 October 2013, Amsterdam, The Netherlands