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Vol. 259, Issue 5, October 2022, pp. 37-44




Development of a Virtual Reality Tool for Therapy and Diagnosis of Schizophrenia

1 Andreia MENDES, 1,2 Duarte DUQUE and 1 Vítor CARVALHO

1 2Ai – School of Technology, IPCA, Campus do IPCA, 4750-810 Barcelos, Portugal
2 ALGORITMI Research Centre / LASI, University of Minho, Guimar?es, Portugal
Tel.: +351 253 802260

E-mail: amendes@ipca.pt, dduque@ipca.pt, vcarvalho@ipca.pt


Received: 2 September 2022 /Accepted: 3 October 2022 Published: 31 October 2022



Abstract: Schizophrenia is a serious mental disorder in which people interpret reality abnormally, often requiring lifelong treatment. In recent years new treatment methods have been tested, which include serious gaming, in particular, with virtual reality technologies. This project aims to develop a virtual reality tool capable of assisting in the therapy of schizophrenia patients. As a starting point, a systematic review was conducted in March 2021 using IEEE Xplore, Science Direct and dl.acm databases, from which 53 results were obtained, and 17 were filtered, revealing both, common aspects, as well as the differences, between healthy individuals and patients with schizophrenia when exposed to the technology and to different scenarios in virtual reality. Continued exposure to virtual reality exercises revealed improvements in the patient’s quality of life, in some studies. This demonstrates that virtual reality can be used as a diagnosis and therapy tool for patients with schizophrenia. This project hopes to develop one such tool, and have it tested with schizophrenia patients while supervised by a medical team, to determine whether it is a viable alternative to traditional therapy, since it is easy and convenient to use.


Keywords: Virtual reality, Schizophrenia, Serious Games, Therapy, Unity.


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