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Medical Science Monitor Basic Research


eISSN: 1643-3750

Virtual Reality Vestibular Rehabilitation in 20 Patients with Vertigo Due to Peripheral Vestibular Dysfunction

Tomasz Stankiewicz, Mariusz Gujski, Artur Niedzielski, Lechosław P. Chmielik

Independent Otoneurology Lab, Medical University of Lublin, Lublin, Poland

Med Sci Monit 2020; 26:e930182

DOI: 10.12659/MSM.930182

Available online: 2020-12-31

Published: 2020-12-31


BACKGROUND: Vestibular compensation is disrupted in patients with chronic vestibular syndrome. Vestibular rehabilitation is an exercise therapy that optimizes the process of vestibular compensation. This study aimed to evaluate virtual reality (VR) vestibular rehabilitation in 20 patients with vertigo due to peripheral vestibular dysfunction at a single center.
Our study aim was to initially assess the impact of using virtual reality technology in vestibular rehabilitation.
MATERIAL AND METHODS: The subjects were 20 patients with unilateral vestibular hypofunction (UVH), as confirmed by videonystagmography. These were divided into 2 groups: Group 1 underwent vestibular rehabilitation using virtual reality and Group 2 was treated by conventional therapy. A VSS-SF questionnaire and the VAS scale were used to assess the effects and levels of patient satisfaction with therapy.
RESULTS: Both groups demonstrated significantly (P<0.001) lower values on the VSS-SF scales and VAS scales when assessed after treatment as compared to before treatment. Those undergoing conventional therapy reported significantly more severe symptoms on the VAS scale than did Group 1 at their second and third therapy visits. Indeed, Group 1 patients that underwent rehabilitation with the virtual reality component awarded significantly higher (P=0.015) levels of subjective satisfaction when compared to Group 2.
CONCLUSIONS: We found that virtual reality vestibular rehabilitation in patients with vertigo due to peripheral vestibular dysfunction was as effective as conventional rehabilitation, with significantly increased levels of patient satisfaction.

Keywords: Vertigo, Vestibular Diseases, Virtual Reality Exposure Therapy