Virtual reality as a distraction intervention for older children receiving chemotherapy.

Journal Article (Clinical Trial;Journal Article)

The purpose of this pilot study was to describe the perceived effectiveness and feasibility of using virtual reality (VR) as a distraction intervention for children, aged 10-17, receiving outpatient chemotherapy. Treatments for cancer are intensive and difficult to endure. Distraction interventions are effective because the individual concentrates on pleasant or interesting stimuli instead of focusing on unpleasant symptoms. VR is a computer-simulated technique allowing an individual to hear and feel stimuli that correspond with a visual image. Evaluation of the VR intervention demonstrated positive outcomes. Eighty-two percent of the children (n = 11) indicated the chemotherapy treatment with the VR was better than previous chemotherapy treatments. All subjects responded positively when asked if they would like to use the VR again. The intervention was easy to implement, did not require practice to be effective, and required minimal nursing time. Results from this pilot study suggest that VR as a distraction intervention has the potential to enhance positive clinical outcomes. This intervention warrants further investigation with both pediatric and adult populations.

Duke Authors

Cited Authors

  • Schneider, SM; Workman, ML

Published Date

  • November 2000

Published In

Volume / Issue

  • 26 / 6

Start / End Page

  • 593 - 597

PubMed ID

  • 12026359

International Standard Serial Number (ISSN)

  • 0097-9805


  • eng