Over in sunny San Diego, California, our favorite video game controller turned medical device, the Kinect, is being used again as the basis for a rehabilitative therapy program designed to allow physical therapists to customize plans and monitor patients. Developed by the West Health Institute, the Reflexion Rehabilitative Measurement Tool uses the Kinect technology to not only monitor adherence to a rehab program, but to also track the motions of rehabilitative exercises to ensure that they are done correctly and to measure progress.
Patients undergoing rehab typically receive individual sessions from physical therapists, who usually teach them exercises and anticipate that they will be done consistently and correctly in between sessions. Of course, there is little accountability, which can slow the healing process or even make it worse if a patient does not adhere to the rehab plan. West Health Institute researchers hope that the Reflexion will be a fun, relatively low-cost solution that will improve compliance, which in turn will result in better outcomes for patients undergoing physical therapy.