VR Flight

VR Flight

Moments after take off, the passenger hears the captain’s voice over the intercom. While listening to his reassuring tone, the passenger looks out the window to his left. He witnesses clouds passing by, the slight bounce in the plane’s wing, and the sun following in the horizon.

VRMC’s VR Flight simulation provides the user with all of these experiences and more. Sitting on actual commercial airplane seats modeled with a built-in 1500 watt linear motor, the user can feel fully immersed from the virtual take off to even thunderstorms. How is this possible? The linear motor, when triggered by audio signals from a 2100 watt amplifier, allows the subject to feel both the rough turbulence of storms and the light vibrations of cruising. Finally, with the inclusion of surround sound, the VR Flight simulation can command the visual, audio, and interactive aspects of the flight experience in the safety of a clinic.

System Components

VR Station

  • MS Windows XP Compatible PC (Desktop or Laptop)
  • Head Mounted Display
  • Tracker
  • Joypad

Physio Station

  • MS Windows XP Compatible PC (Desktop or Laptop)
  • Physiological Monitoring Device

*Platform set up available
– Airplane Seats
– Subwoofer System

Pain Management

Pain Management

Unlike any other VRMC product, the pain distraction application is uniquely created from the imagination of the mind. The virtual environments for this application avoid the realms of reality, instead of simulating it. Enchanted Forest, Dream Castle, Icy Cool World, and Vista View are currently the virtual environments created for pain distraction. In these worlds, users can roam around at their own leisure, exploring the art-filled four-story castle, witnessing the vibrantly colored tiger-deer, interacting with friendly penguins, and more. Additionally, those who are physically disabled can now scale the icy mountains or take a dip in a swimming pool. All this comes with the added benefit of pain distraction, whether it is at the dentist or doctor’s office.

Using a head mounted display (HMD) provides the patient with an immersive experience where the movement of his/her head directly correlates to what the user sees. Besides the four existing virtual environments, VRMC has created three distinctively different interactive environments: Wind City, Oceaquatic City, and Shell Island. These worlds utilize many of the user’s senses and encourage him/her to become immersed in the world he/she is experiencing. In the end, this program does what reality itself cannot, and that is to make fantasies come to life.

 


Mobile Platform

PC Version System Components
VR Station

  • MS Windows XP Compatible PC (Desktop or Laptop)
  • Head Mounted Display
  • Tracker
  • Joypad

 

PTSD

PTSD

19.1% of service members returning home form Iraq report having PTSD, major depression, or other mental disorders. 35% of Iraq war veterans accessed mental health services in the year after returning home. Mental health problems reported on the post-deployment assessment were significantly associated with combat experiences. To learn more about the causes and symptoms f PTSD, VRMC has tailored its focus towards post deployed soldiers being affected by PTSD. The battlefield with convoy, battalion camp, hospital, marketplace, and Iraqi village are the virtual environments that VRMC has created for subject exposure. In these scenarios, users with re-experience certain situations like a convoy ambush, patients screaming in pain, the littered streets of  Iraqi villages, citizen interaction, and pre-operation at the battalion camp.
The first step in analyzing subjects with PTSD is to identify the stressors. Subjects are monitored by a real-time physiological device that records the subject’s vital signs, including heart rate, respiration, skin conductance, temperature, electroencephalogram (EEG), and electro cardiogram (ECG). From these recordings, researchers can identify which situations provide the most stress for the subjects. With accurate details based off of scouting reports, media, and soldier interviews, these environments fully immerse the subject in virtual Iraq, allowing him to re-experience the trauma that is the Iraq War without being exposed the life-threatening dangers associated with it.

System Components

VR Station

  • 2 MS Windows XP Compatible PCs (Desktop or Laptop)
  • Head Mounted Display
  • Tracker
  • Joypad

Physio Station

  • MS Windows XP Compatible PC (Desktop or Laptop)
  • Physiological Monitoring Device

ICS Kit

Injury Creation Science (ICS) Kit

To help medical personnel training for war to overcome the shock effect of trauma work while also sharpening their medical skills, the Virtual Reality Medical Center (VRMC) conceptualized and developed Injury Creation Science (ICS), a suite of wearable simulated wounds. ICS very realistically replicates a number of battlefield injuries such as eviscerations, blast injuries, penetrations, and burns. A selection of these wounds are now available in a portable, ruggedized kit designed for battlefield trauma training. The ICS Simple Kit allows for the application of prosthetic entry, exit, and shrapnel wounds for live training exercises. ICS is based on principles of surgical simulation to enhance medical training, yet it is fundamentally different from computer and mannequin-based models, which present technical challenges and compromised realism. The goal of our trauma training program is to provide immersive training that not only simulates injuries but allows combat medics to practice actual medical procedures common to the battlefield. The next generation kit  (Dynamic Kit) will include the materials required to train emergency medical personnel in performing a cricothyrotomy and chest tube insertion and managing dynamic bleeding wounds. The Simple Kit was validated during extensive factory testing and a training exercise at the University of Florida (UF) Center for Simulation Education and Safety Research (CSESaR). Each kit includes 76 prosthetic appliances of the same skin tone along with the peripheral items required (e.g. adhesive, remover, makeup, simulated blood, application supplies, etc.). ICS is compatible with modeling injuries on human actors, patient simulators, and stand-alone devices. This project is supported by funding from U.S. Army Research, Development, and Engineering Command (RDECOM) and Telemedicine and Advanced Technology Research Center (TATRC).

 

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Conquering Panic, Anxiety, &Phobias
Achieving Success Through Virtual Reality and Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy

By Dr. Brenda K. Wiederhold, PhD, MBA, BCIA

This book is written as a starting point toward helping the large portion of our population that suffers from anxiety disorders to overcome their fears and control their anxiety. It is a resource to enable those suffering from anxiety to take control of their lives and become an active participant in their own recovery.

This book is essentially divided into two parts: a discussion of anxiety and its physical and emotional effects on sufferers. While Virtual Reality Therapy is described, its use is not necessary in order to follow the suggestions in this book. The lessons and worksheets included can help in a variety of areas, not just anxiety, but anger, mild depression, and feelings of helplessness.

 

 

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Expose Yourself! San Diego

A Guide for Healthcare Provides and Their Patients
By Dr. Brenda K. Wiederhold, PhD, MBA, BCIA

Expose Yourself! is a tool to help those who are attempting to overcome specific phobias with self-guided exposure therapy. Along with information about anxiety disorders and Cognitive-Behavioral techniques, this exposure companion contains hundreds of suggestions for possible exposure hierarchies and situations. The book includes photographs and descriptions of a variety of exposure options around San Diego County, but this book can be used for exposure inspiration in any location. Future volumes will be available for different locations around the world.

This book is an invaluable guide for those using it as an adjunct to therapy or for those attempting to overcome their fears on their own.

 

 

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Virtual Healers
Brenda K. Wiederhold, Ph.D., MBA, BCIA 

 

Virtual Reality in the Mental Health arena is barely over a decade old. Because VR is still such a young and focused field, the members of its community have come together as a tight-knit family.

In Virtual Healers, Dr. Brenda K. Wiederhold, herself a pioneer of VR, sits down in casual one-on-one interviews with more than a dozen of the top researchers of this select group. As a fellow scientist and friend, she allows the reader a rare, in-depth look inside their world. Along with her, you will discover the answers to how these remarkable men and women came to the VR field, what successes and set-backs they have experienced, what keeps them going, as well as how this technology has affected them both personally and professionally.

Virtual Healers is a must-read for the general reader as well as for any healthcare providers who have experienced VR treatment, are considering it, or have an interest in how advanced technologies are shaping the future of health care.

 

 

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Virtual Healing

Brenda K. Wiederhold, Ph.D., MBA, BCIA 

 

Along with aliens and time travel, virtual reality (VR) is often thought of as a science fiction dream. Though it was developed nearly five decades ago, the use of VR in the private sector, particularly in the field of patient care, has become a possibility only in the past decade. As programmers are creating more detailed and interactive environments, the rapid advancement of technology combined with decreasing costs has turned VR into a promising alternative to traditional therapies. VR allows therapists to create a safe, low-cost environment in which they can easily modify the speed and intensity of the therapeutic process. With this ability to tailor the virtual experience to each specific patient’s need, the necessity to educate the patient has become increasingly significant.

Virtual Healing fulfills that need. In twelve clear chapters, Dr. Brenda K. Wiederhold, one of the pioneers in the use of VR, plainly discusses the application of VR for Specific Phobias, Posttraumatic Stress Disorders, Panic Disorder, Eating Disorders and Obesity, Pain Distraction, Education and Training, Nicotine Addictions, Physical and Neurological Rehabilitation, Erectile Dysfunction, and Schizophrenia. She will explain the symptoms of each disorder and how VR can help. Further, the reader will meet researchers from around the world who are working to advance the use of VR treatment, and hear from patients who have undergone the process. It is Dr. Wiederhold’s hope that this book may serve as a source of information as well as comfort.

 

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Virtual Reflections

By Dr. Brenda K. Wiederhold, PhD, MBA, BCIA 

There have been thousands of volumes published throughout history containing famous quotations. Many of these are well organized, comprehensive, and extremely helpful for researchers. However, often these books are unwieldy, and the task of finding quotes relevant to a specific purpose is frankly not feasible for the casual reader.

This is where Virtual Reflections is different from other quote compilations. I have selected the quotes and passages included here to be tailored specifically for those who are attempting to overcome panic, anxiety or phobias. In addition, many of you may find this book useful if you are experiencing feelings of mild depression, or simply need an outward source of inspiration in your life. My goal is not to have this book be a substitute for treatment, but instead to have it serve you as an aid as you progress along your journey towards recovery. My hope is that it may be a source of comfort and strength, bolstering your spirit and helping to ease those difficult moments you may encounter as you begin working towards overcoming your anxiety.

 

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Annual Review of CyberTherapy and Telemedicine, Volume 1, 2003
Advanced Technologies in the Behavioral, Social and Neurosciences
By Brenda K. Wiederhold, PhD, MBA, BCIA, Giuseppe Riva, PhD, MS, MA 

 

ARCTT is a peer-reviewed journal covering a wide variety of topics of interest to the mental health, neuroscience, and rehabilitation communities. The mission of ARCTT is to provide systematic, periodic examinations of scholarly advances in the field of CyberTherapy and Telemedicine through novel experimental clinical studies or critical authoritative reviews. It is directed to healthcare providers and researchers who are interested in the applications of advanced media for improving the delivery and efficacy of mental healthcare and rehabilitative services. This first Volume of ARCTT offers the reader a collection of 15 of the best manuscripts from the 2003 CyberTherapy Conference. It offers critical reviews, evaluation studies, original research, and clinical observations as well as includes all abstracts from the 2003 conference.

 

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Annual Review of CyberTherapy and Telemedicine, Volume 2, 2004
Interactive Media in Training and Therapeutic Interventions
By Brenda K. Wiederhold, PhD, MBA, BCIA , Giuseppe Riva, PhD, MS, MA

 

ARCTT is a peer-reviewed journal covering a wide variety of topics of interest to the mental health, neuroscience, and rehabilitation communities. The mission of ARCTT is to provide systematic, periodic examinations of scholarly advances in the field of CyberTherapy and Telemedicine through novel experimental clinical studies or critical authoritative reviews.

It is directed to healthcare providers and researchers who are interested in the applications of advanced media for improving the delivery and efficacy of mental healthcare and rehabilitative services.

This second volume of the Annual Review of CyberTherapy and Telemedicine (ARCTT) offers an even more extensive selection of manuscritps than the previous years. The editors-in-cheif, Drs. Brenda K. Wiederhold and Giuseppe Riva, have included 17 from the area of critical reviews, evaluation studies, original research and critical observations as well as all the abstracts from the 2004 CyberTherapy Conference.

 

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Annual Review of CyberTherapy and Telemedicine, Volume 3, 2005

A Decade of Virtual Reality
By Brenda K. Wiederhold, PhD, MBA, BCIA, Giuseppe Riva, PhD, MS, MA,
Alex H. Bullinger, MD, MBA 

 

ARCTT is a peer-reviewed journal covering a wide variety of topics of interest to the mental health, neuroscience, and rehabilitation communities. The mission of ARCTT is to provide systematic, periodic examinations of scholarly advances in the field of CyberTherapy and Telemedicine through novel experimental clinical studies or critical authoritative reviews. It is directed to healthcare providers and researchers who are interested in the applications of advanced media for improving the delivery and efficacy of mental healthcare and rehabilitative services. This first Volume of ARCTT offers the reader a collection of 28 of the best manuscripts from the 2005 CyberTherapy Conference. It offers critical reviews, evaluation studies, original research, and clinical observations as well as includes all abstracts from the 2005 conference.

 

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CyberTherapy Conference Archives 1996-2005
A Collection of all abstracts from the past 10 years of CyberTherapy
By Brenda K. Wiederhold, PhD, MBA, BCIA 

 

A decade ago, CyberTherapy, then still in its infancy, only existed as a specialized Virtual Reality and Behavioral Healthcare Symposium at the Medicine Meets Virtual Reality (MMVR) Conference. At that first session, Dr. Ralph Lamson presented a small study on virtual reality (VR) exposure for treatment of acrophobia in ten participants. It is now clear that in 1996, we had only begun to realize what promise might lie ahead for both VR technology and the CyberTherapy Conference. Much has changed over the past ten years and we have now tapped further into VRMIs™ potential than many of us could have ever imagined. Today, researchers from around the world are busy completing hundreds of trials, applying VR for such varied disorders as Anxiety, Eating Disorders and Obesity, Addictions, Erectile Dysfunction, Autism and Schizophrenia. In addition, VR for Neurorehabilitation and Physical Rehabilitation has shown definite success, as has VR for other such diverse areas as Pain Distraction (both acute and chronic), Education, Training, and Physical Disabilities.

I am proud to report that as VRMIs™ use in Behavioral Healthcare has grown, so has the CyberTherapy Conference. What began as a specialized symposium at MMVR concerned mainly with conceptual matters, has now grown into the largest program on controlled clinical trials of VR and other advanced technologies in the areas of behavioral healthcare, rehabilitation, disabilities, education, and training.
To celebrate a decade of Virtual Reality Research, the CyberTherapy Archives serves as a collection of all abstracts from the past ten years.

 

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Virtual Reality Resources

By Brenda K. Wiederhold, PhD, MBA, BCIA 

 

We, at the Interactive Media Institute, realized early on that it was relatively difficult for professionals wanting to break into the Virtual Reality (VR) field to locate relevant information. While the material was out there, there was no clear organizational structure or database to link it. To solve this problem, we have put together Virtual Reality Resources, a relevant compilation for researchers and clinicians alike.

Virtual Reality Resources offers a clear overview of the advantages of using VR for Cognitive-Behavioral, Neuropsychological, and Physical Assessment and Intervention Applications. Further, it includes pertinent logistical information on such diverse topics as Basic Cost/Benefit questions, CRISP Grantees, necessary technology, and significant websites. Finally, the selected bibliography is an excellent guide for anyone looking for a deeper understanding of what scientific manuscripts have been published and what work still needs to be done.

We are confident that this collection will not only advance your personal knowledge, but through its clear organization and accessibility will aid in promoting the VR field as a whole.

 

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Virtual Reality Therapy for Anxiety Disorders : 
Advances in Evaluation and Treatment
By Brenda K. Wiederhold, PhD, MBA, BCIA and Mark D. Wiederhold, MD, PhD

 

Anxiety disorders are the most common mental health disorder diagnosed by primary care physicians, but they are particularly challenging to treat, often requiring long-term therapy. In vivo exposure and de-sensitization to the anxiety-provoking scenario are usually effective treatments, but they present a number of practical difficulties for both therapist and patient.

Virtual Reality Therapy for Anxiety Disorders explores how the latest virtual reality interventions can be used to treat patients with anxiety disorders. Virtual reality therapy enables the patient to experience a realistic, yet carefully controlled exposure to an anxiety-provoking scenario, in the therapist’s own office. While virtual reality environments were initially quite costly and demanded powerful computers, their price has decreased of late, making this form of treatment an intriguing option for therapists.

The authors, who are themselves experienced VR therapists, provide detailed guidelines on how to conduct VR treatment with patients suffering from various anxiety disorders. They provide not only an overview of the equipment used and the basic principles of treatment, but also discussion of virtual reality therapy for specific disorders including panic disorder and agoraphobia, obsessive-compulsive disorder, fear of flying or driving, claustrophobia, arachnophobia, and fear of medical procedures.

 

 

 

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Annual Review of CyberTherapy and Telemedicine, Volume 4, 2006
Virtual Healing: Designing Reality
By Brenda K. Wiederhold, PhD, MBA, BCIA, Giuseppe Riva, PhD, MS, MA,
Stephane Bouchard, PhD

 

ARCTT is a peer-reviewed journal covering a wide variety of topics of interest to the mental health, neuroscience, and rehabilitation communities. The mission of ARCTT is to provide systematic, periodic examinations of scholarly advances in the field of CyberTherapy and Telemedicine through novel experimental clinical studies or critical authoritative reviews. It is directed to healthcare providers and researchers who are interested in the applications of advanced media for improving the delivery and efficacy of mental healthcare and rehabilitative services.

 

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Annual Review of CyberTherapy and Telemedicine, Volume 5, 2007
Transforming Healthcare Through Technology
By Brenda K. Wiederhold, PhD, MBA, BCIA, Giuseppe Riva, PhD, MS, MA,
Stephane Bouchard, PhD

 

ARCTT is a peer-reviewed journal covering a wide variety of topics of interest to the mental health, neuroscience, and rehabilitation communities. The mission of ARCTT is to provide systematic, periodic examinations of scholarly advances in the field of CyberTherapy and Telemedicine through novel experimental clinical studies or critical authoritative reviews. It is directed to healthcare providers and researchers who are interested in the applications of advanced media for improving the delivery and efficacy of mental healthcare and rehabilitative services.