A virtual reality gaming system, specially developed for young patients, is making medical procedures involving needles less painful for children and less stressful for parents.
Here’s how it works. A pediatric patient wears a lightweight, cardboard headset. Games are loaded onto a smartphone. Then the child is immersed in the world of an interactive display that takes their mind off the needle prick. The result of the distraction technique allows doctors and nurses to do their work easier and safer.
“My kids go through a lot when it comes to needle-related procedures,” said Dr. Amy Dunn, a pediatric hematologist at Nationwide Children’s Hospital. “I see the struggle these children and their families deal with on a daily basis, so I was looking for different and new ways to help them address this fear.”
To make treatments easier, Dunn worked with Jeremy Patterson, Interactive Architect at Nationwide Children’s Hospital, to create a virtual reality game system that children control using their eyes, head movements and deep breaths.
Nationwide Children’s Hospital