Title: Development of a serious game to enhance assistive rehabilitation

Authors: Mauro Bellone; Andrea Martini; Francesco Argese; Piero Cirillo; Italo Spada; Antonio Cerasa

Addresses: Department of Applied Mechanics, Chalmers University of Technology, SE-41296, Göteborg, Sweden ' Consorzio CETMA, I-72100 Brindisi, Italy ' Consorzio CETMA, I-72100 Brindisi, Italy ' Consorzio CETMA, I-72100 Brindisi, Italy ' Consorzio CETMA, I-72100 Brindisi, Italy ' Neuroimaging Unit, IBFM-CNR, I-88100 Catanzaro, Italy; S. Anna Institute and Research in Advanced Neurorehabilitation (RAN), I-88900 Crotone, Italy; University 'Magna Graecia' – UNICZ, I-88100 Catanzaro, Italy

Abstract: The aim of this study is to investigate novel assistive technologies based on serious gaming for the assessment of postural control and motor rehabilitation. Previous research already demonstrated that rehabilitation and physical activities can improve the quality of life of patients, and virtual reality applications may act as good additional companions during the therapeutic sessions. Indeed, workout routines supported by serious gaming encourage patients to train harder, bringing the therapy towards a pleasant game into a virtual environment. During the game, sensors track the movements of the players and transfer the data to software components that record a database from which patients' progress can be determined. The acquired measures are interpreted in the form of new biomarkers, which enable the assessment of postural control. Such biomarkers are based on a probabilistic approach and show the capability to discriminate between well-performed exercises and incorrect movements. A long-term experimentation on a specific exercise is proposed, showing a considerable improvement, ranging from 5% to 30%, in the performance of patients.

Keywords: rehabilitation; virtual reality; motor inabilities; visual tracking; assistive technologies.

DOI: 10.1504/IJMEI.2019.104960

International Journal of Medical Engineering and Informatics, 2019 Vol.11 No.4, pp.299 - 319

Received: 13 May 2017
Accepted: 30 Nov 2017

Published online: 10 Feb 2020 *

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