How a house fire survivor uses Virtual Reality as therapy

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Friday, January 26, 2024
How a house fire survivor uses Virtual Reality as therapy
Emily Dorsheimer straps on a Virtual Reality headset during therapy to help find her balance and relearn everyday tasks.

PLYMOUTH MEETING, Pennsylvania (WPVI) -- After surviving a devastating house fire, Emily Dorsheimer is using the power of Virtual Reality to help her recover.

"At first, I didn't think I could get back to being out in the world doing everyday activities," said Emily Dorsheimer, "But now I am."

The name of this technology is called The REAL System, a virtual reality rehabilitation tool by Penumbra, Inc. At AristaCare at Meadow Springs in Plymouth Meeting, therapists have been using it to complement their care for about a year.

"The benefit of the system is we're able to do some things in a much more controlled environment," said Tim Bullis, Director of Rehab at AristaCare at Meadow Springs.

This includes tasks like showering and making sandwiches. But it also extends to fun games like pinball and dancing to help restore balance and coordination.

"I didn't think I was going to be able to endure the pain while doing it," said Dorsheimer, who still endures pain from her burns. "But I did. I pushed through it."

To learn more about The REAL System or AristaCare at Meadow Springs, visit their websites.

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