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The Effectiveness of Binocular Virtual Reality Training on Repairing Visual Field Defect of Glaucoma
Cyberpsychology, Behavior, and Social Networking  (IF4.157),  Pub Date : 2021-10-13, DOI: 10.1089/cyber.2021.0215
JiaHao Fan, Yan Lu, Mark Wiederhold, Brenda Wiederhold, Hang Chu, Li Yan

Visual field defect caused by glaucoma seriously affects the quality of life of patients, and clinically, this type of visual field defect has been considered to be irreversible. The aim of this study is to use binocular virtual reality training (VR training) to repair visual field defect in glaucoma patients, improve the quality of life of patients, and provide a new therapeutic strategy for the rehabilitation of glaucoma. Seventy glaucoma patients (median 56, range 15–84 years) were recruited and divided into control and training groups. Fifty-four patients' data were analyzed. The training group (n = 30) received binocular VR training for 3 months. The control group (n = 24) maintained the conventional treatment without any other intervention. Their visual field index (VFI) and mean defect (MD), and retinal nerve fiber layer average thickness (RNFL) and ganglion cell layer average thickness (GCL) average thickness before training and during followup were analyzed. In the training group, the VFI value (Z = 3.277; p = 0.001) and MD value (Z = 3.913; p < 0.0001) were significantly improved after 1 month of training. After 3 months of training, the VFI value (Z = 3.761; p < 0.0001) and MD value (Z = 3.133; p = 0.002) were significantly improved. There was no significant difference with the changes of average thickness of RNFL (p = 0.350) and GCL average (p = 0.383) after 3 months of training; whereas in the control group, except for a further reduction in GCL average thickness (Z = 3.158; p = 0.002) compared with the baseline data, the other followup data were not statistically significant compared with the baseline data. Our data suggested that binocular VR training can significantly improve the visual field defect of glaucoma patients but warrants further study with large sample size.