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JFSF Vol 8, No 2, June 2023, p.66-73

doi: 10.22540/JFSF-08-066


Original Article

Head mounted display effect on vestibular rehabilitation exercises performance

Christos Nikitas1, Dimitris Kikidis1, Athanasios Pardalis2, Michalis Tsoukatos1, Sofia Papadopoulou1, Athanasios Bibas1, Doris E. Bamiou3,4

  1. 1st Department of Otorhinolaryngology, Head and Neck Surgery, National and Kapodistrian University of Athens, Hippocrateion General Hospital, Athens, Greece
  2. Unit of Medical Technology and Intelligent Information Systems, Department of Materials Science and Engineering, University of Ioannina, Ioannina, Greece
  3. Ear Institute, University College London, London, United Kingdom
  4. Biomedical Research Centre Hearing and Deafness, University College London Hospitals, London, United Kingdom

Keywords: Augmented Reality, Exercise, Head Mounted Display, Rehabilitation, Vestibular


Objectives: Vestibular rehabilitation clinical guidelines document the additional benefit offered by the Mixed Reality environments in the reduction of symptoms and the improvement of balance in peripheral vestibular hypofunction. The HOLOBalance platform offers vestibular rehabilitation exercises, in an Augmented Reality (AR) environment, projecting them using a low- cost Head Mounted Display. The effect of the AR equipment on the performance in three of the commonest vestibular rehabilitation exercises is investigated in this pilot study. Methods: Twenty-five healthy adults (12/25 women) participated, executing the predetermined exercises with or without the use of the AR equipment. Results: Statistically significant difference was obtained only in the frequency of head movements in the yaw plane during the execution of a vestibular adaptation exercise by healthy adults (0.97 Hz; 95% CI=(0.56, 1.39), p<0.001). In terms of difficulty in exercise execution, the use of the equipment led to statistically significant differences at the vestibular-oculomotor adaptation exercise in the pitch plane (OR=3.64, 95% CI (-0.22, 7.50), p=0.049), and in the standing exercise (OR=28.28. 95% CI (23.6, 32.96), p=0.0001). Conclusion: Τhe use of AR equipment in vestibular rehabilitation protocols should be adapted to the clinicians’ needs.
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