Special Issue "Virtual Reality Applications in Neurorehabilitation"

A special issue of Brain Sciences (ISSN 2076-3425). This special issue belongs to the section "Neurorehabilitation".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (15 September 2023) | Viewed by 1430

Special Issue Editors

UOC Neuroriabilitazione ad Alta Intensità, Fondazione Policlinico Universitario A. Gemelli IRCCS, 00168 Rome, Italy
Interests: brain injury; tDCS; virtual reality; rehabilitation; motor imagery
Special Issues, Collections and Topics in MDPI journals
Department of Psychology, University of Almeria, 04120 Almeria, Spain
Interests: virtual reality; neurorehabilitation; motor system; neuropsychology; dementia; visual perception
Special Issues, Collections and Topics in MDPI journals
Department of Health Sciences, University of Jaen, Paraje Las Lagunillas s/n, 23071 Jaen, Spain
Interests: virtual reality; exergames; video games; physiotherapy; central nervous system dis-eases; peripheral nervous system diseases; postural balance; upper extremity; falls; quality of life
Department of Health Sciences, University of Jaén, Jaén, Spain
Interests: virtual-reality-based therapy; augmented therapy; chronic pain; neuropathic pain; phantom pain; neurorehabilitation; physiotherapy
Special Issues, Collections and Topics in MDPI journals

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

It is our pleasure to introduce a Special Issue of Brain Science dedicated to basic neuroscience and clinical research about the use of virtual reality applications in neurorehabilitation.

In recent times, technological systems applied to neurorehabilitation have experienced a remarkable evolution. In particular, as virtual reality technology has become more affordable and popular among the population, it has also gained popularity as a tool for diagnosis, treatment, and even education in the fields of neuroscience and neurorehabilitation.

Virtual reality allows the patient to be introduced into a virtual environment resembling the real world, allowing the user to behave in such scenarios as they usually do in real life. One of the main advantages of virtual environments is that they can be customized by designing tasks that fit the individual’s cognitive and physical capabilities, increasing the ecological validity of interventions and experimental paradigms. Moreover, it is acknowledged that virtual reality helps therapists to motivate patients to stay engaged in rehabilitation procedures.

Virtual reality offers the possibility of being combined with a wide range of sensors such as inertial measurement units (IMUs), electroencephalography (EEG), electromyography (EMG), and functional near-infrared spectroscopy (fNIRS) to track progress in patients’ performance, but also their impacts on physiological and neurobiological mechanisms. Timely feedback provides objective information to therapists about the efficacy of the intervention and permits neuroscientists to investigate how the nervous system responds to the therapy. This facilitates practitioners and researchers to develop new interventions, correct possible mistakes, and understand how the nervous system responds to the therapy.

Virtual reality-based telerehabilitation is another area of active research. Therapists prescribe exercise routines via the web which are performed by patients from the comfort of their homes.

Nevertheless, despite the growing evidence regarding the positive effects of VR in rehabilitation, there are still some concerns regarding its acceptability and efficacy in some individuals and pathologies. It is therefore essential that researchers and practitioners comprehensively address which factors of virtual reality-based rehabilitation enhance its therapeutic efficacy, how they can be combined with different strategies to get the best protocol for each case, and which are the physiological, neurobiological, and psychological mechanisms underpinning the results.

The aim of this Special Issue is to provide an overview of evidence from clinical and basic research perspectives about the use of virtual reality applications in neurorehabilitation. A non-exhaustive list of potential papers may include studies on clinical populations, basic neuroscience research, or teaching approaches for healthcare students.

With regard to the format of papers, we will consider research articles, communications, opinion/perspective articles, and review articles (narrative review, systematic review, and meta-analysis).

Prof. Dr. Augusto Fusco
Dr. Francisco Nieto-Escamez
Dr. Esteban Obrero-Gaitán
Guest Editors

Dr. Irene Cortés Pérez
Guest Editor Assistant

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All submissions that pass pre-check are peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Brain Sciences is an international peer-reviewed open access monthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 2200 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.


  • neurorehabilitation
  • virtual reality
  • videogames
  • exergames
  • telerehabilitation
  • central nervous system diseases
  • peripheral nervous system diseases
  • spinal cord injury
  • artificial intelligence
  • neuroimage
  • neuroanatomy
  • neurophysiology
  • physiotherapy
  • occupational therapy
  • neuropsychology
  • interdisciplinary approach

Published Papers (1 paper)

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4 pages, 222 KiB  
Virtual Reality Applications in Neurorehabilitation: Current Panorama and Challenges
Brain Sci. 2023, 13(5), 819; https://doi.org/10.3390/brainsci13050819 - 18 May 2023
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1162
Central Nervous System Diseases are a leading cause of disability worldwide, posing significant social and economic burdens for patients, their families, caregivers, and society as a whole [...] Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Virtual Reality Applications in Neurorehabilitation)
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