Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Virtual Game Helps Children Escape Realities Of Burn Unit

Date:
October 11, 2007
Source:
Columbus Children's Hospital
Summary:
Nurses and physicians are using the latest technology to help young burn victims endure the extreme pain of dressing changes and wound care. Instead of traditional distraction devices, such as books and music, Nationwide Children's Hospital Burn Center is now using virtual reality games to distract patients while nurses attend to the patients' burn wounds.

Patient Jarod Hoopes plays a video game while a nurse cares for his burn wound.
Credit: MediaSource

Nurses and physicians at Nationwide Children's Hospital are using the latest technology to help young burn victims endure the extreme pain of dressing changes and wound care. Instead of traditional distraction devices, such as books and music, Nationwide Children's Hospital Burn Center is now using virtual reality games to distract patients while nurses attend to the patients' burn wounds.

Related Articles


"It's long been known that the actual treatment for a burn is far worse than the actual injury. Initially, the wound has to be cleaned and the dressing applied, and that can be a very painful and lengthy procedure," said Dr. Catherine Butz, PhD, a psychologist at Nationwide Children's Hospital and an Assistant Professor at The Ohio State University College of Medicine.

Following this initial treatment, patients must endure subsequent wound care procedures, some of which can be both extensive and painful, depending on the extent of the burn. During these procedures, anxiety often plays a major role in the patient's pain level.

"Research shows a very strong connection between anxiety and pain," said Dr. Butz. "Distraction does a great job in decreasing any kind of anxiety that might be associated with the anticipated procedures, so by distracting patients and keeping anxiety at a minimum, procedures tend to go much more smoothly and be much less painful for the child."

The device, made possible by a donation from the Aladdin Shriner's Hospital Association for Children, allows patients to escape into a computer-generated world complete with its own environment, creatures and sounds. Patients wear a virtual reality helmet, and once in this new world, they interact in the virtual environment with the help of child life specialists, trained to assist kids through stressful medical treatments.

Since Nationwide Children's Hospital began using the device in May 2007, it has already resulted in positive feedback from burn patients. Burn nurses report several patients have noticeably improved in terms of their ability to tolerate dressing changes.

In order to better understand the effect on pain, doctors at Nationwide Children's have launched a study to compare the results of virtual reality pain distraction with traditional distraction techniques, such as watching television, listening to music, counting and deep breathing. Patients will be randomly assigned to receive virtual reality or another pain distraction technique. Following the procedure, they will be asked to gauge their level of pain on a scale of zero to 10. The study will also assess the perspectives of parents and nurses in terms of the child's pain and level of distress.

The burn program's goal is to be able to better engage the child in a distraction activity which will hopefully have a beneficial affect on the procedure. An added benefit for patients may be a decrease in the amount of pain and anxiety medications needed. However doctors point out that pain is a very individual experience, and the benefits of virtual reality distraction as well as the level of medication must be determined on a case by case basis.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Columbus Children's Hospital. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

Columbus Children's Hospital. "Virtual Game Helps Children Escape Realities Of Burn Unit." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 11 October 2007. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2007/10/071009101818.htm>.
Columbus Children's Hospital. (2007, October 11). Virtual Game Helps Children Escape Realities Of Burn Unit. ScienceDaily. Retrieved April 1, 2015 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2007/10/071009101818.htm
Columbus Children's Hospital. "Virtual Game Helps Children Escape Realities Of Burn Unit." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2007/10/071009101818.htm (accessed April 1, 2015).

Share This


More From ScienceDaily



More Health & Medicine News

Wednesday, April 1, 2015

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Wound-Healing Laser Soon to Be a Reality Israeli Scientist

Wound-Healing Laser Soon to Be a Reality Israeli Scientist

Reuters - Innovations Video Online (Apr. 1, 2015) — Israeli scientists says laser bonding of tissue allows much faster healing and less scarring. Amy Pollock has more. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Liberia Sees Resurgence of Drug Trafficking as Ebola Wanes

Liberia Sees Resurgence of Drug Trafficking as Ebola Wanes

AFP (Apr. 1, 2015) — The governments of Liberia and Sierra Leone have been busy fighting the menace created by the deadly Ebola virus, but illicit drug lords have taken advantage of the situation to advance the drug trade. Duration: 01:12 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Stigma Stalks India's Leprosy Sufferers as Disease Returns

Stigma Stalks India's Leprosy Sufferers as Disease Returns

AFP (Apr. 1, 2015) — The Indian government declared victory over leprosy in 2005, but the disease is making a comeback in some parts of the country, with more than a hundred thousand lepers still living in colonies, shunned from society. Duration: 02:41 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
7-Year-Old Girl Gets 3-D Printed 'robohand'

7-Year-Old Girl Gets 3-D Printed 'robohand'

AP (Mar. 31, 2015) — Although she never had much interest in prosthetic limbs before, Faith Lennox couldn&apos;t wait to slip on her new robohand. The 7-year-old, who lost part of her left arm when she was a baby, grabbed it as soon as it came off a 3-D printer. (March 31) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
 
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:  

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories

 

Health & Medicine

Mind & Brain

Living & Well

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:  

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile iPhone Android Web
Follow Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins