'Wii-habilitation': Using video games to heal burns

Sep 19, 2008

(PhysOrg.com) -- Video games, often regarded as mindless entertainment for lethargic children and teens, are proving to be an effective new tool to motivate patients to perform rehabilitation exercises.

Rehabilitation therapists from the William Randolph Hearst Burn Center at NewYork-Presbyterian Hospital/Weill Cornell Medical Center are using the motion-sensitive Nintendo Wii video game console, along with traditional methods, to help patients recover from life-changing injuries.

For burn and skin-graft patients, moving and stretching the skin is very painful but imperative for a successful recovery. To play the video games, patients use wireless remotes that control actions on a screen to simulate realistic motions, like swinging a tennis racquet or swatting a baseball.

The burn center is also using Guitar Hero III, a special add-on to the Nintendo Wii system whose controller looks like a miniature guitar. Patients strum a bar on the guitar's body and press color-coded buttons that resemble notes. Therapists hope the actions will help patients with burns on their hands, arms and shoulders regain fine-motor control.

Provided by Cornell University

Explore further: World's first wearable blue LED light therapy device to treat skin disease psoriasis vulgaris

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Montreal VR headset team turns to crowdfunding for Totem

Sep 18, 2014

A challenger in the virtual reality headset marketplace has launched a crowdfunding campaign to get the project off the ground. The headset is called Totem. The company behind Totem is Montreal-based Vrvana. ...

Knee-deep sensing

Aug 19, 2014

A new, non-invasive technique to track the motion of knee bones in 3D with a very high precision has been presented by researchers in Australia. By employing a single-element ultrasound sensor and a fast ...

Recommended for you

Motion capture examines dance techniques

Sep 29, 2014

WAAPA dance students are set to take part in a world-first biomechanical study that tracks their training, technique and injuries as they develop as professional performers.

User comments : 0