Rehabilitation via HOMe-Based gaming exercise for the Upper limb post Stroke (RHOMBUS): a qualitative analysis of participants’ experience

Cherry Kilbride*, Tom Butcher, Alyson Warland, Jennifer Ryan, Daniel J. M. Scott, Elizabeth Cassidy, Dimitrios A. Athanasiou, Guillem Singla-Buxarrais, Karen Baker, Meriel Norris

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

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Abstract

Objective To report participants’ experiences of trial processes and use of the Neurofenix platform for homebased rehabilitation following stroke. The platform, consisting of the NeuroBall device and Neurofenix app, is a non-immersive virtual reality tool to facilitate upper limb rehabilitation following stroke. The platform has recently been evaluated and demonstrated to be safe and effective through a non-randomised feasibility trial (RHOMBUS).

Design Qualitative approach using semistructured interviews. Interviews were audio recorded, transcribed verbatim and analysed using the framework method. Setting Participants’ homes, South-East England.

Participants Purposeful sample of 18 adults (≥18 years), minimum 12 weeks following stroke, not receiving upper limb rehabilitation prior to the RHOMBUS trial, scoring 9–25 on the Motricity Index (elbow and shoulder), with sufficient cognitive and communicative abilities to participate.

Results Five themes were developed which explored both trial processes and experiences of using the platform. Factors that influenced participant’s decision to take part in the trial, their perceptions of support provided during the trial and communication with the research team were found to be important contextual factors effecting participants’ overall experience. Specific themes around usability and comfort of the NeuroBall device, factors motivating persistence and perceived effectiveness of the intervention were highlighted as being central to the usability and acceptability of the platform.

Conclusion This study demonstrated the overall acceptability of the platform and identified areas for enhancement which have since been implemented by Neurofenix. The findings add to the developing literature on the interface between virtual reality systems and user experience.
Original languageEnglish
Article numbere075821
Pages (from-to)1-8
Number of pages8
JournalBMJ Open
Volume14
Issue number1
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 19 Jan 2024

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