Step forward for Parkinson’s disease patients with frozen gait

Researchers have found a new way to help Parkinson’s disease patients by using a simulated virtual reality environment to help those suffering from the phenomenon known as “freezing of gait” (FOG). FOG affects over half of all Parkinson’s patients, and is commonly triggered by having to walk through narrow doorways.

Using a new magnetic resonance (MR) scanner, the research team devised a realistic virtual reality (VR) environment with a series of corridors and doorways, which patients navigate using foot pedals.

Parkinson’s disease affects 80,000 Australians costing the nation more than $6 billion every year. The research team is now recruiting patients for a trial investigating whether there are benefits from exercising in VR for Parkinson’s disease patients who experience FOG.

Read more at University of Sydney