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01.12.2017 | Research article | Ausgabe 1/2017 Open Access

BMC Neurology 1/2017

The effects of video game therapy on balance and attention in chronic ambulatory traumatic brain injury: an exploratory study

BMC Neurology > Ausgabe 1/2017
Sofia Straudi, Giacomo Severini, Amira Sabbagh Charabati, Claudia Pavarelli, Giulia Gamberini, Anna Scotti, Nino Basaglia



Patients with traumatic brain injury often have balance and attentive disorders. Video game therapy (VGT) has been proposed as a new intervention to improve mobility and attention through a reward-learning approach. In this pilot randomized, controlled trial, we tested the effects of VGT, compared with a balance platform therapy (BPT), on balance, mobility and selective attention in chronic traumatic brain injury patients.


We enrolled chronic traumatic brain injury patients (n = 21) that randomly received VGT or BPT for 3 sessions per week for 6 weeks. The clinical outcome measures included: i) the Community Balance & Mobility Scale (CB&M); ii) the Unified Balance Scale (UBS); iii) the Timed Up and Go test (TUG); iv) static balance and v) selective visual attention evaluation (Go/Nogo task).


Both groups improved in CB&M scores, but only the VGT group increased on the UBS and TUG with a between-group significance (p < 0.05). Selective attention improved significantly in the VGT group (p < 0.01).


Video game therapy is an option for the management of chronic traumatic brain injury patients to ameliorate balance and attention deficits.

Trial registration

NCT01883830, April 5 2013.
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