Mechanism of Kinect-based virtual reality training for motor functional recovery of upper limbs after subacute stroke.
The Kinect-based virtual reality system for the Xbox 360 enables users to control and interact with the game console without the need to touch a game controller, and provides rehabilitation training for stroke patients with lower limb dysfunctions. However, the underlying mechanism remains unclear. In this study, 18 healthy subjects and five patients after subacute stroke were included. The five patients were scanned using functional MRI prior to training, 3 weeks after training and at a 12-week follow-up, and then compared with healthy subjects. The Fugl-Meyer Assessment and Wolf Motor Function Test scores of the hemiplegic upper limbs of stroke patients were significantly increased 3 weeks after training and at the 12-week follow-up. Functional MRI results showed that contralateral primary sensorimotor cortex was activated after Kinect-based virtual reality training in the stroke patients compared with the healthy subjects. Contralateral primary sensorimotor cortex, the bilateral supplementary motor area and the ipsilateral cerebellum were also activated during hand-clenching in all 18 healthy subjects. Our findings indicate that Kinect-based virtual reality training could promote the recovery of upper limb motor function in subacute stroke patients, and brain reorganization by Kinect-based virtual reality training may be linked to the contralateral sensorimotor cortex.更多