Virtual reality rehabilitation as a treatment approach for older women with mixed urinary incontinence : a feasibility study
Article [Accepted Manuscript]
Is part ofNeurology and urodynynamics ; vol. 34, no. 3, pp. 236-243.
Background Motivated patients are more likely to adhere to treatment resulting in better outcomes. Virtual reality rehabilitation (VRR) is a treatment approach that includes video gaming to enhance motivation and functional training. Aims The study objectives were (1) to evaluate the feasibility of using a combination of pelvic floor muscles (PFM) exercises and VRR (PFM/VRR) to treat mixed urinary incontinence (MUI) in older women, (2) to evaluate the effectiveness of the PFM/VRR program on MUI symptoms, quality of life (QoL), and (3) gather quantitative information regarding patient satisfaction with this new combined training program. Methods Women 65 years and older with at least 2 weekly episodes of MUI were recruited. Participants were evaluated two times before and one time after a 12-week PFM/VRR training program. Feasibility was defined as the participants' rate of participation in and completion of both the PFM/VRR training program and the home exercise. Effectiveness was evaluated through a bladder diary, pad test, symptom and QoL questionnaire, and participant's satisfaction through a questionnaire. Results Twenty-four women (70.5 ± 3.6 years) participated. The participants complied with the study demands in terms of attendance at the weekly treatment sessions (91%), adherence to home exercise (92%) and completion of the three evaluations (96%). Post-intervention, the frequency and quantity of urine leakage decreased and patientreported symptoms and QoL improved significantly. Most participants were very satisfied with treatment (91%). Conclusion A combined PFM/VRR program is an acceptable, efficient, and satisfying functional treatment for older women with MUI and should be explore through further RCTs.