In order to participate in FDA approved clinical trials, children with Duchenne muscular dystrophy need to pass a six minute walking test that’s used to gauge motor ability. In the hope of including more patients into such studies, researchers at the Nationwide Children’s Hospital have developed a new video game that can be used as a tool for evaluating patients with Duchennes.
In the game the character on the screen is being attacked by aliens, and by swinging their arms around the players project a shield that protects the character from the attacks. The system uses a Microsoft Kinect 3D camera that tracks arm movements while a computer analyzes this data that provides details about the children’s reaching ability. The researchers hope that this kind of technology will become a common way for evaluating Duchennes patients, opening up the possibility that more boys with the disease will be eligible for clinical trials.
Here’s a video report about the research from Nationwide Children’s:
Study in journal Muscle & Nerve: Reliability and validity of ACTIVE-seated: An outcome in dystrophinopathy