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VR Headsets Being Used to Help Cystic Fibrosis Patients Cope with The Life Threatening Disease

Cystic fibrosis is an inherited, life-long and life-threatening disorder where the lungs and digestive system can become clogged with thick, sticky mucus.

VR Headsets Being Used to Help Cystic Fibrosis Patients Cope with The Life Threatening Disease 24/11/2017
VR Headsets being Used to Help Cystic Fibrosis Patients Cope with the life threatening disease

Photo Credit: BBC

The genetic condition affects more than 10,400 people in the UK where one in 25 people carry the faulty gene that causes it, usually without knowing. Now, according to BBC, VR headsets are being used to help people going through treatment for the disorder.

The first trial of its kind in the UK is being carried out at Llandough Hospital in Vale of Glamorgan.

Patients can explore their surroundings as a distraction therapy when immersed in a safari experience.

The disorder, which causes a build-up of thick sticky mucus in the lungs, digestive system and other organs, causing a wide range of challenging symptoms affecting the entire body, affects about 400 people in Wales,

The trial at the Wales Adult Cystic Fibrosis Centre aims to reduce pain levels and anxiety among sufferers.

For any patient hospitalized with the disorder any distraction from is welcomed.

One of the patients who trialed it found it to be quite effective.

“I was really pleasantly surprised. It really does take you to somewhere else for a few minutes. A hospital stay is never going to be enjoyable. So it's great to just get out and get taken to another place for just a short period of time,” Beth Clarke told BBC.

We have seen where Virtual Reality has been used with success on chemotherapy patients in Australia.

The Llandough Hospital is working with Swansea University to create games patients can play against each other to go along with the cycling experience that encourages them to exercise.

Cystic fibrosis affects many organs of the body forcing patients to endure long, complex daily regime of treatment, medication, and physiotherapy.

Due to the fact that the disorder is hereditary, the patients are usually young in age and are good with technology. The center thought with the combination it was a good idea to utilize the VR headsets to help them.

According to Orchard, the company behind the project, there are plans to expand it.

“We are looking at wearable technology to monitor the feelings of the patient and if needed adjust the actual experience to ensure the patient is getting maximum benefit, chief operating officer at Orchard Matthew Wordley told BBC.

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