Extended Reality

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Extended reality (XR) is the broad classification of technologies that enable a user to engage in an 3-dimensional electronically created virtual environment. This includes augmented reality (AR), which permits simultaneous interaction in the physical environment with the overlay of a computerized environment, and virtual reality (VR), which blocks visual input from the physical environment and permits the user to interact within a purely virtual environment in the metaverse. Although XR technologies have been around for decades, in the past 3 years, the quality and comfort of the experience for the user, the commercial availability of the technology, and the range of applications has witnessed exponential gains. 

UMMC has harnessed this novel virtual environment to explore its use in healthcare, specifically as a clinical modality through telehealth, to reach patients in underserved and remote areas.  XR technologies enable clinical interaction in a truly unique way, in the metaverse.  We are currently conducting research with a range of populations, including those with concussion, chronic pain, attention deficit, autism spectrum, and others. These projects will be the first describing the use of VR for diagnostic tests and treatment interventions in these populations.