Is interactive, motion-capture rehabilitation effective on functional outcomes in an inpatient stroke population: a randomised control trial

E Jovic, Tasmanian Health Service
M Bird, University of Tasmania
J Cannell, Tasmanian Health Service
A Rathjen, Tasmanian Health Service
K Lane, Tasmanian Health Service
A Tyson, Tasmanian Health Service
M Callisaya, University of Tasmania
Sandra Smith, Southern Cross University
K Ahuja, University of Tasmania

Document Type Conference publication


Background: The efficacy of interactive, motion-capture rehabilitation is not known. While some evidence supports efficacy, limitations exist due to the variety of devices and software available and rapid evolution of new technologies. Aim: To compare the efficacy of novel interactive, virtual reality motion-capture rehabilitation to usual care stroke rehabilitation on physical function. Method: Clients in two subacute hospital rehabilitation units were individually randomised to usual care or intervention. In addition to usual functional retraining, participants had targeted individualised programs for up to an hour, on week days, for 8–40 sessions. The intervention group undertook this using interactive, motion-capture software. The usual care group undertook this in a group class on one unit or 1:1 with a rehabilitation assistant on the other. Pre-post between group differences were analysed for balance, upper limb and gait functional outcomes. Results: Seventy-three people after stroke (mean 22.1 days) attended mean fourteen sessions. Both groups improved [mean (95%CI)] on the primary outcome functional reach [usual care 3.3 (0.6 to 5.9), intervention 4.1 (1.3 to 6.8) cm], box and block increased [usual care 9.5 (6.2 to 12.9), intervention 7.6 (4.1 to 11] and Timed up-and-go [usual care −8.4 (−13.0 to −3.0), intervention −10.1 (−16.9 to −3.4)] (all p < 0.04) with no between group differences. Conclusion: Interactive, motion-capture-rehabilitation for inpatients after stroke produced similar functional improvements to usual care stroke rehabilitation, irrespective of being delivered by a physical therapist or a rehabilitation assistant. This may broaden effective therapy options for stroke survivors in inpatient rehabilitation.