Three-month follow-up results of a double-blind, randomized placebo-controlled trial of 8-week self-administered at-home behavioral skills-based virtual reality (VR) for chronic low back pain. The journal of pain Garcia, L. M., Birckhead, B. J., Krishnamurthy, P., Mackey, I., Sackman, J., Salmasi, V., Louis, R., Maddox, T., Darnall, B. D. 2021


Prior work established post-treatment efficacy for an 8-week home-based therapeutic virtual reality (VR) program in a double-blind, parallel arm, randomized placebo-controlled study. Participants were randomized 1:1 to one of two 56-day VR programs: (1) a therapeutic immersive pain relief skills VR program; or (2) a Sham VR program within an identical commercial VR headset. Immediate post-treatment results demonstrated clinically meaningful and superior reduction for therapeutic VR compared to Sham VR for average pain intensity, indices of pain-related interference (activity, mood, stress but not sleep), physical function and sleep disturbance. The objective of the current report was to quantify treatment effects to post-treatment month 3 and describe durability of effects. Intention-to-treat analyses revealed sustained benefits for both groups and superiority for therapeutic VR for pain intensity and multiple indices of pain-related interference (activity, stress, and newly for sleep; effect sizes ranged from drm?=?0.56 to 0.88) and physical function from pre-treatment to post-treatment month 3. The between-group difference for sleep disturbance was non-significant and pain-interference with mood did not survive multiplicity correction at 3 months. For most primary and secondary outcomes, treatment effects for therapeutic VR showed durability and maintained superiority to Sham VR in the 3-month post-treatment period.

View details for DOI 10.1016/j.jpain.2021.12.002

View details for PubMedID 34902548