Spatial orientation decline in elderly population

Francesca Morganti, Giuseppe Riva

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution


Wayfinding ability has a high adaptive value, allowing humans to efficiently explore an environment in order to have a goal-oriented activity. The ability to orient in space starts declining with age and it constitute one of the main signs of cognitive impairment in neurological patients. Spatial orientation decline constitutes however an high limitation for elderly population and it has a great impact on subject the day-life autonomy and on her/his relatives and caregivers. Despite this, the neuropsychological approach on spatial cognition does not allow researchers and clinicians to have an accurate assessment of patient's everyday wayfinding ability. This could be critical in a borderline situation, such as in an age-related cognitive decline, in which spatial stimuli can be correctly individuated even if wayfinding is compromised. The main aim of this contribution is to introduce preliminary data about a spatial evaluation procedure - the VR Maze test - on healthy elderly and Alzheimer's population. This will support the identification of specific treatments able to prevent the cognitive decline in elderly and the rehabilitation of spatial orientation in neurological patients.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publication2011 International Conference on Virtual Rehabilitation, ICVR 2011
Publication statusPublished - 2011
Event2011 International Conference on Virtual Rehabilitation, ICVR 2011 - Zurich, Switzerland
Duration: Jun 27 2011Jun 29 2011


Other2011 International Conference on Virtual Rehabilitation, ICVR 2011


  • Cognitive decline
  • Enactive cognition
  • Neuropsychological assessment
  • Rehabilitation
  • Spatial orientation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Artificial Intelligence
  • Biomedical Engineering

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