Aim. To assess changes in locomotion and balance in adolescents affected by ataxia secondary to acquired brain injury after a rehabilitation treatment with physiotherapy and the Gait Real-time Analysis Interactive Lab (GRAIL), an immersive virtual reality platform. Methods. 11 ataxic adolescents (16(5) years old, 4.7(6.7) years from injury) underwent 20 45-minute sessions with GRAIL plus 20 45-minute sessions of physiotherapy in one month. Patients were assessed before and after rehabilitation with functional scales and three-dimensional multiple-step gait analysis. Results. Results showed significant improvements in ataxia score assessed by the Scale for the Assessment and Rating of Ataxia, in dimension D and E of Gross Motor Function Measure, in walking endurance and in balance abilities. Moreover, the training fostered significant changes at hip, knee, and ankle joints, and the decrease of gait variability, toward healthy references. Interpretation. In spite of the pilot nature of the study, data suggest that training with immersive virtual reality and physiotherapy is a promising approach for ataxic gait rehabilitation, even in chronic conditions.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)
- Immunology and Microbiology(all)