A new medical research report has found that interactive video games can be utilized to enhance physical therapy in intensive care units.
The report from research facility Johns Hopkins, entitled Journal of Critical Care, surveyed 22 criticially ill adult patients, providing them with video games as part of their routine physical therapy over the course of a year.
These therapy sessions included use of the Nintendo Wii and Wii Fit hardware, with boxing and bowling games played by patients.
Dale Needham, medical director of the Critical Care Physical Medicine & Rehabilitation Program at Johns Hopkins, explained that these patients enjoyed the change of routine.
"As always, patient safety was a top priority, given that healthy people playing video games may be injured during routine gaming, but when properly selected and supervised by experienced ICU physical therapists, patients enjoyed the challenge of the video games and welcomed the change from their physical therapy routines," he noted.
The research team said that its next step is to work out which physical therapy goals are best benefitted by use of video games.