The effect of Virtual Reality (VR) on anxiety and pain in patients undergoing port implantation Preliminary results of a feasibility study

Mine Sargut, Stefan Schorn, Alexander Novotny, Helmut Friess, Dirk Wilhelm, Maximilian Berlet, Michael Kranzfelder

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Scopus citations

Abstract

A growing body of evidence supports Virtual Reality (VR) as an effective and safe strategy for management of pain and stress associated with medical procedures in both adults and children. We therefore initiated a feasibility study to investigate the effect of VR on pain, stress, and anxiety during elective surgery, e.g. implantation of a central-venous port catheter, hypothesizing that VR can reduce intraoperative pain, stress and anxiety of the patient. In this manuscript, the preliminary results of the first 20 (out of 6o planned) patients are presented. Baseline pain characteristics did not differ between the two study groups (VR group (n=10) and standard (no VR device) group (n=10)). System usability ("easy to use", "easy to learn"and "safe") was rated "good - very good"by the study participants. Selfassessment of anxiety components (Y-6 item questionnaire) revealed a calming (3.3 ± 0.5 vs. 2.4 ± 0.5, P= 0.009) and relaxing (2.7 ± 1.2 vs. 1.8 ± 0.4; P=0.09) effect of the VR device. Evaluation of pain level (Short form McGill questionnaire) during the procedure revealed a lower pain intensity (VAS) level (17.5 ± 12.1 vs. 19.5 ± 10.6; P= 0.834) and present pain intensity (PPI) score (0.9 ± 0.6 vs. 1.0 ± 0.5; P= 0.841) in the VR group Preliminary data of our feasibility study indicates a positive effect of VR towards reduction of pain and stress in patients undergoing minor surgery in local anaesthesia. However, further data is needed to substantiate these results.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)97-100
Number of pages4
JournalCurrent Directions in Biomedical Engineering
Volume8
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - 1 Jul 2022
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • Virtual Reality (VR)
  • anxiety
  • feasibility study
  • pain
  • port implantation

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