Journal Scan

More studies needed to understand benefits of gaming for pediatric neurorehabilitation

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Researchers identified 43 studies related to gaming technologies for pediatric neurorehabilitation, including:

-11 feasibility studies
-6 studies proposing home-system solutions
-9 studies presenting gamified robotic devices
-9 longitudinal intervention trials
-8 reviews

Shortcomings of the studies analyzed included small sample sizes; short study durations; and different methodologies, outcome measurements, and terminologies. In addition, most studies focused on the most common pediatric neurology conditions, including cerebral palsy, brain injuries, and autism, neglecting the larger spectrum of neurological conditions.

Although drawing evidence-based conclusions on the use of gaming technologies for the rehabilitation of children with neurological disorders is difficult due to the limitations highlighted in this review, raising awareness among health professionals about gaming technologies is an important next step along with undergoing rigorous studies “that clearly refer to the underlying neuroscientific principles.”

Iosa M, Verrelli CM, Gentile AE, et al. Gaming Technology for Pediatric Neurorehabilitation: A Systematic Review. Front Pediatr. 2022;10:775356. doi: 10.3389/fped.2022.775356. PMID: 35155305; PMCID: PMC8832052.