The development of a novel balance platform for concussion assessment

Wilkinson, Melanie Rachel (2017). The development of a novel balance platform for concussion assessment. University of Birmingham. M.Sc.

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Balance dysfunction has been recognised as a key marker of concussion for many years. Whilst this measure has been exploited within concussion assessments, current balance procedures are expensive, and laboratory-constrained or inexpensive, but subjective. The present study focused on developing an objective, inexpensive tool to assess balance utilizing Virtual Reality (VR) to induce a perturbation and a Wii Balance Board (WBB) to measure the response. The first part of this thesis focused on constructing a VR-WBB system to determine its validity when assessing balance. Notably, piloting confined the VR component of the system was effective in inducing perturbation and further, the WBB could adequately quantify the response by obtaining sensitive centre of pressure (COP) data. The second prut of this thesis focused on refining this prototype, assessing how an individual's balance would be affected by speed-manipulated and axismanipulated perturbations. Current studies highlighted that manipulating axes and speed of perturbation significantly affected the COP response, which has profound implications when developing the optimal VR-WBB tool. Overall this thesis confirms that the VR- WBB prototype is an effective system to induce a perturbation and obtain quantifiable balance responses. With further parameter refinement, this tool could be revolutionary for pitchside assessment of concussion.

Type of Work: Thesis (Masters by Research > M.Sc.)
Award Type: Masters by Research > M.Sc.
College/Faculty: Colleges (2008 onwards) > College of Life & Environmental Sciences
School or Department: School of Sport, Exercise and Rehabilitation Sciences
Funders: None/not applicable
Subjects: R Medicine > RC Internal medicine > RC0321 Neuroscience. Biological psychiatry. Neuropsychiatry
R Medicine > RC Internal medicine > RC1200 Sports Medicine


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