The Use of Virtual Reality Learning on Transition Education in Adolescents with Congenital Heart Disease

Victor Kieu, Christopher Sumski, Scott Cohen, Emily Reinhardt, David M. Axelrod, Stephanie S. Handler

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations

Abstract

Improvement in congenital heart disease (CHD) outcomes has created a growing population of adolescents and young adults with unique health needs that require thoughtful transition planning and eventual transfer of care to an adult provider. Often, poor health literacy and limited resources can lead to interrupted care, which places them at risk for adverse health-related consequences. In 2019, the Wisconsin Adult Congenital Heart Disease transition program partnered with Stanford Virtual Heart (SVH), a virtual reality (VR) platform, to allow young adult patients to learn about their CHD in a clinic-based setting. We completed a single-center pilot study to evaluate these patients’ experience and perceptions to using VR during their transition education. At an initial transition visit, we used an immediate post-VR experience survey, scored using Likert scales of 1–5 (1 = strongly disagree, 5 = strongly agree). Twenty-two patients (13 males) between the ages of 16 and 19 participated. Lesions included pulmonary stenosis, Tetralogy of Fallot, atrial and ventricular septal defect, coarctation, aortic stenosis, hypoplastic left heart syndrome, and patent ductus arteriosus. Likert averages were 4.7 for finding VR helped with understanding their heart lesion, 4.6 for finding VR helped with understanding their heart surgery, 4.7 for enjoying the VR heart simulation, and 4.6 for finding that it was a good use of time. This study demonstrates that adolescents enjoyed using SVH and found it helpful. Clinical implementation shows promise as a plausible adjunct tool for transition education.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1856-1860
Number of pages5
JournalPediatric Cardiology
Volume44
Issue number8
DOIs
StatePublished - Dec 2023

Keywords

  • Adolescents
  • Congenital heart disease
  • Patient education
  • Stanford Virtual Heart
  • Transition education
  • Virtual reality

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