ADHD Industry to Advance as a Team Creates new Virtual Reality Game that could Help Identify the Condition in Children in Real-Time

  • Analysis
  • 15-February-2022

ADHD affects roughly 6% of children worldwide. But current methods for measuring its symptoms have serious flaws. The CPT (Continuous Performance Task) test is currently the most reliable objective approach for detecting attentional deficits in ADHD. However, the examination includes interviews and questionnaires. It assesses sustained and selective attention by having participants watch a succession of letters appear on the screen and hit a key each time the letter is not "X." The vagueness of symptom questionnaires is a problem, as CPT does not assess performance in real-life settings.

A novel virtual reality game, now developed, could aid in the detection of symptoms associated with ADHD (Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder) in youngsters. A task that has been difficult to do with current methods. The game is immensely beneficial for ADHD Industry as it could diagnose and treat ADHD and other diseases that affect attention and executive function.

EPELI (Executive Performance in Everyday Living) is a virtual reality game that simulates everyday scenarios and can be used to test attention under normal conditions.

One hundred twelve children ages 9 to 12 were recruited in the study, 47 of whom had ADHD. The participants roamed around a virtual abode using a head-mounted display and a hand controller to accomplish a series of ordinary tasks. Participants had to prepare ahead, consider how to navigate, recall the tasks assigned to them, and avoid being distracted by other events.' In the task, the children with ADHD made much more mistakes and performed behaviors irrelevant to the task than the control group. The game's outcomes were also highly associated with the daily obstacles indicated in parent-rated questionnaires.

Even though it's still in the initial stages of development, the game's accuracy in detecting attention and executive function deficits is already comparable to that of CPT. The researchers also pointed out that one advantage of the game is its ability to tap a broader range of everyday challenges.

Brain traumas, mental health illnesses, autism, and aging-related brain diseases all cause attention and executive function problems in people of all ages. ADHD isn't the only brain condition that's difficult to identify with today's technology. EPELI could assist in discovering additional problems like it.

According to the team, tools like EPELI can assist reduce the strain on overworked healthcare systems. The team has created a version of EPELI that can be used without virtual reality and can be utilized remotely.