Program-Ace built a VR healthcare app that takes a practical and verstatile approach to rehabilitation

Hand Rehabilitation VR Training

Program-Ace built a VR healthcare app that takes a practical and verstatile approach to rehabilitation.

Background Info

This training solution was built to be used on the Oculus Quest VR platform, which includes a headset and VR gloves. It places the user in a digital setting where they must work with the trainer (Andy) to complete objectives related to hand movement. In the long run, this type of solution has the potential to improve hand mobility, range of motion, and muscular strength.

Business Challenges

1
Real impact on the treatment
One of the biggest challenges was creating a solution that would have a real impact on the treatment of patients. Developing it to be safe and follow medical guidelines was quite different from other applications which are solely focused on creating a fun experience or cultivating some minor skills, and the stakes were bigger implement.
2
High accuracy tracking system
In order for the solution to work as intended, it was crucial to implement a state-of-the-art tracking system with inordinately high accuracy. Every movement of the hand and wrist, no matter how small or quick needed to be recorded accurately, since results and analysis can be achieved only with precision. This allowed us to capture exact angles at which the hand and fingers are bent.
3
Realistic look and feel of the simulation
Our client had strict requirements for the experience, and we had to put a lot of effort into creating the look and feel of the simulation that they envisioned. We had to adapt the content and information that would go into the simulation so that it was relevant, up to date, and gave users a clear understanding of what they needed to do and how everything worked.

Approach and Solution

We were forced to work in limited timeframes for this project, and the requirements and guidelines were quite strict. Thus, the development process was accelerated and quite intense. As the first order of business, we had to research hand rehabilitation and how range of motion improvement takes place. We were provided with the basic movements and learning materials, but still had to adapt them to an immersive scenario.

Much of the development time went towards establishing top-notch motion tracking in the hand and wrist. Since progress in the app is achieved with small (sometimes miniscule) movements of the hand and changing angles, we had to make sure these movements were registered properly and the data was not rounded up or down too drastically.

This tracking system had to take into account which position the hand is in at rest and how it is when all fingers are extended, to serve as a contrast for targeted movements. Getting this system to work accurately required a lot of physical testing with a VR glove, and our research and guidelines about patients with limited hand mobility also came in handy.

In addition to the motion tracking system, we added 3D models, animation, sound, and VFX to provide a fully immersive experience that mirrors real-life rehabilitation. As a result, any user that puts on a glove and engages the VR hardware & software finds himself in a simulation where he tries to repeat the movements made by a virtual trainer (Andy) while the instructions also appear in text.

The movements results are displayed on the screen and completing an objective allows the user to move on to the next stage. Rehabilitation is never a fast process, so the app was built to be used many times over the course of weeks and months.

VR hand rehabilitation screen

Technical Information

This project was handled by a single senior developer. He craftily built the software and made it come together with the Unity engine and two Virtual Reality Toolkit, which were uniquely suited to this project and the hardware it would run on.
c# logo Unity VRTK logo Oculus logo

Audience

This application is geared towards the medical industry, and more specifically – telemedicine. It is suitable for both patients and those who work in the industry – doctors, nurses, rehabilitation specialists. One group can use it to improve their ability, while the other can use it as a form of treatment and a way of collecting data on rehabilitation progress.
Medical staff
Medical staff
Rehabilitation specialists
Rehabilitation specialists
Patients to recover
Patients in recovery
Patients to improve mobility
Patients restoring mobility
Oculus Quest for rehabilitation app

Value Delivered

This project was a resounding success, with great value delivered to rehab patients and medical specialists that work with them. It was successfully deployed on Oculus Quest and functioned smoothly. As a result, the medical community has gained a new and innovative tool that is convenient to use. Other achievements and benefits include:
  1. This project was completed at a record pace in very short timeframes, despite only one developer working on it.
  2. A state-of-the-art tracking system was built, monitoring even the smallest movements and offering positive reinforcement in the long process of healing.
  3. We built a high-quality, intuitive interface that is easy to use even for those who have no prior experience with VR, such as elderly patients.
  4. The completed scenario successfully replicates real-life rehabilitation techniques, with a virtual trainer offering guidance.
  5. Such a remote-focused solution can eliminate or reduce the need of rehab patients to visit medical centers regularly.

Watch the Training Process of Hand Rehabilitation VR App

IAOP
Clutch AR/VR
Clutch B2B
Unity Certified
ETSA
EBA
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