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Effect of virtual reality distraction on pain among patients with hand injury undergoing dressing change

Authors

  • Chunlan Guo BN,

    Associate Professor
    1. Outpatient Surgery, The First College of Clinical Medical Sciences, China Three Gorges University, Yichang, China
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  • Hongyan Deng BN,

    Associate Professor, Corresponding author
    1. Outpatient Surgery, The First College of Clinical Medical Sciences, China Three Gorges University, Yichang, China
    • Correspondence: Hongyan Deng and Jian Yang, Associate Professor, Outpatient Surgery and Department of Cardiology, The First College of Clinical Medical Sciences, China Three Gorges University, No. 183 Yiling Road, Yichang, Hubei Province, China. Telephone: +86 0717 6483495/+86 0717 6486177.

      E-mails: dhy19701204@163.com and yangjian_ctgu@163.com

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  • Jian Yang PhD, MD

    Associate Professor, Corresponding author
    1. Department of Cardiology, The First College of Clinical Medical Sciences, China Three Gorges University, Yichang, China
    • Correspondence: Hongyan Deng and Jian Yang, Associate Professor, Outpatient Surgery and Department of Cardiology, The First College of Clinical Medical Sciences, China Three Gorges University, No. 183 Yiling Road, Yichang, Hubei Province, China. Telephone: +86 0717 6483495/+86 0717 6486177.

      E-mails: dhy19701204@163.com and yangjian_ctgu@163.com

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Abstract

Aims and objectives

To assess the effect of virtual reality distraction on pain among patients with a hand injury undergoing a dressing change.

Background

Virtual reality distraction can effectively alleviate pain among patients undergoing a dressing change. Clinical research has not addressed pain control during a dressing change.

Design

A randomised controlled trial was performed.

Methods

In the first dressing change sequence, 98 patients were randomly divided into an experimental group and a control group, with 49 cases in each group. Pain levels were compared between the two groups before and after the dressing change using a visual analog scale. The sense of involvement in virtual environments was measured using the Pearson correlation coefficient analysis, which determined the relationship between the sense of involvement and pain level.

Results

The difference in visual analog scale scores between the two groups before the dressing change was not statistically significant (t = 0·196, > 0·05), but the scores became statistically significant after the dressing change (t = −30·792, < 0·01). The correlation between the sense of involvement in a virtual environment and pain level during the dressing was statistically significant (R2 = 0·5538, < 0·05).

Conclusion

Virtual reality distraction can effectively alleviate pain among patients with a hand injury undergoing a dressing change. Better results can be obtained by increasing the sense of involvement in a virtual environment.

Relevance to clinical practice

Virtual reality distraction can effectively relieve pain without side effects and is not reliant on a doctor's prescription. This tool is convenient for nurses to use, especially when analgesics are unavailable.

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