Virtual Reality Exposure Therapy For Iraq Vets

It looks like Virtual Reality Exposure Therapy will be tried with the soldiers returning from Iraq.

The Department of Defense National Center for Telehealth and Technology, in partnership with the Defenses Center of Excellence for Psychological Health and Traumatic Brain Injury, and the Department of Psychology at Madigan, were funded by the United States Army Medical Research and Materiel Command, to conduct a four-year study to determine the effectiveness of VRET on active-duty servicemembers returning from Operations Iraqi Freedom and Enduring Freedom who are suffering from PTSD.

Through VRET, behavioral health providers can use 360-degree, interactive computer-generated environments uniquely tailored to expose the patients back into the environment and experience where the trauma occurred, to help reduce anxiety and post-traumatic stress.

The congressionally-funded medical research study is the first randomized clinical trial that uses active-duty military diagnosed with combat-related PTSD to compare VRET results to traditional "imaginal" prolonged exposure therapy, and to a control group that waits five weeks for any type of treatment.

The study's sample size is 120 servicemembers to complete the three types of treatment options. Treatment sessions for each type of therapy last about 90 minutes, said Dr. Greg Reger, the chief of T2's Innovative Technology Applications division. And the best way to participate in the study is to be recommended by a behavioral health specialist at Madigan Healthcare System or Naval Hospital Bremerton.

The program uses the Virtual Iraq program (see 'Virtual Iraq' Therapy For PTSD.


(Virtual Reality Exposure Therapy)

Patients undergoing VRET still explain to the therapist what happened that caused the trauma, but are exposed to a variety of computer-generated stimuli with the program "Virtual Iraq." VRET is designed to promote a multi-sensory emotional connection to the memory, thus helping the patient be able to gradually face the traumatic experiences that underlie his or her distressing memories after a number of treatment sessions.

This connection is facilitated by having the patient put on a head-mounted display (over-the-eyes video glasses) and either ride or drive in a simulated convoy, and Reger matches the scenario to the event. Or a Soldier will be given a dummy M-4 with a mounted game controller and conduct a dismounted patrol, and Reger could simulate gunfire.

Reger can customize the simulation experience ensuring ample control of the exposure to the programmed situations - changing weather conditions, terrain, helicopter flyovers, types of attack; even add in Muslim prayer call.

Fans of the marvelous sf writer Roger Zelazny may recall his description of the Ro-Womb in his 1966 novel The Dream Master. In the novel, a psychotherapist used this device to control the dreams of his patients.

Render turned away from the window and approached the great egg that lay beside his desk, smooth and glittering… He pressed the second red button.

With a sigh, the egg lost its dazzling opacity, and a horizontal crack appeared around its middle. Through the now transparent shell, he could see Erikson grimacing, squeezing his eyes tight, fighting against a return to consciousness and the thing it would contain. The upper half of the egg rose vertical to the base, exposing him knobby and pink on half-shell… Render used this time to check the ro-womb.

He leaned back against his desk and pressed the buttons: temperature control, full range, check; exotic sounds - he raised the earphone - check … on the patient's own voice, trapped earlier in analysis, check, on the sound blanket, the moisture spray, the odor banks, check, on the couch agitator, the colored lights, the taste simulates…

From Army.mil.

Scroll down for more stories in the same category. (Story submitted 1/22/2010)

Follow this kind of news @Technovelgy.

| Email | RSS | Blog It | Stumble | del.icio.us | Digg | Reddit |

Would you like to contribute a story tip? It's easy:
Get the URL of the story, and the related sf author, and add it here.

Comment/Join discussion ( 1 )

Related News Stories - (" Medical ")

Skin Electronics Can Show Electrocardiogram
'... the young men in the streets who applied polyimde OLED body film to their bared shoulders.' - Chen Qiufan, 2019.

Neurodevices For Consumers? Neuroethicists (And Philip K Dick) Say 'Caveat Emptor'
'They tried to use it today and it wouldn't work. No colors and no ceph patterns, neither one...' - Philip K. Dick, 1977.

BrainEx Restores Some Activity To Severed Pig Head
'... they placed the brain in a special solution, having all the properties of Nursing the brain cells.' - Edmond Hamilton, 1929.

Purdue Pharma Ready To Profit From OxyContin Use Or Addiction Recovery
'It may be organic damage. It may be permanent. Time'll tell, and only after you are off Substance D for a long while.' - Philip K. Dick, 1977.

 

Google
  Web TechNovelgy.com   

Technovelgy (that's tech-novel-gee!) is devoted to the creative science inventions and ideas of sf authors. Look for the Invention Category that interests you, the Glossary, the Invention Timeline, or see what's New.

 

 

 

 

 

Current News

Nobe 3-Wheel Electric Vehicle Parking Like I, Robot
Spidercar, Spidercar, does whatever a spidercar does.

Michelin Self-Sealing Tires On Ford's Explorer
'...a seal of compressed plastifoam to save the air.'

Mushroom Eats Plastic, Saves Planet
Fungus Amongus, SaveUs!

Juggalo Face Paint Disrupts Facial Recognition
'... designed to foil facial recognition systems.'

Mojipic Smart Voice Vehicle Emojis
KITT, what's your response?

Unusual Twist On Woman Dates Robot
'My hearing, vision and awareness went along with that excellent imitation of a young Adonis...'

BrainNet Triple Telepathic Gaming Threat
'In the gloomy half-darkness the three idiots sat babbling.'

AVAS Noisemakers Required For EVs By EU
'...a sound tape to supply the noise of a soi-disant "[internal combustion]" engine...'

Pun Generation Via Neural Nets
'You said you wanted him to be able to distinguish between laugh-power in different gags...'

Blood Battery Robotic Fish
'With one fluid motion, it surged forward, plunged, and was gone.'

Lightyear One Solar-Powered Electric Car (Design By Heinlein)
'It drew its power from six square yards of sunpower screens on its low curved roof.'

'Agression Detectors' Don't Work When Spying On Students
'The professional agitators had also learned how to modulate their voices below the danger level...'

Mining Of Golden Asteroid Foretold In 1898 Science Fiction
'This must be a golden planet—this little asteroid.'

Miners! NASA Wants To License RASSOR Excavator
'The borers had been dismantled and packed away.'

Bee+ Robobee Now With Four Wings
'It was a tiny thing, scarcely more than an inch and a half in length...'

CNSILK Robotic Spider Builder
'We could certainly spin a web right through the Solar System, if we can think of a good use for one.'

More SF in the News Stories

More Beyond Technovelgy science news stories

Home | Glossary | Invention Timeline | Category | New | Contact Us | FAQ | Advertise |
Technovelgy.com - where science meets fiction™

Copyright© Technovelgy LLC; all rights reserved.