Serious games for upper limb rehabilitation: a systematic review

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31 Citations (Scopus)


The aim of this research is to carry out a systematic review of the use of technological gaming platforms with serious games in the upper limb rehabilitation of patients with neuromotor disorders. Through a systematic review, the first two authors defined the inclusion criteria and extracted the data, resulting in 38 studies collected from B-On, PubMed and Medline. Ninety-two per cent of the selected articles were published since 2010. This review documents 35 different gaming platforms types. Twenty-one of the 38 articles included in this review conducted a clinical trial and of those only eight report improvements in the target population following the use of the games and platforms. This review concludes that a new paradigm is emerging in the rehabilitation field, characterized by the systematic use of technological gaming platforms with serious games in/for rehabilitation. The use of this approach seems to be beneficial. However, to facilitate the full integration of these platforms, it is necessary to conduct more research in this area, explore new approaches and carry out in-depth clinical studies into the benefits of these platforms.Implications for rehabilitation This review states that the use serious games and gaming platforms for upper limb rehabilitation are starting a new paradigm in the rehabilitation. For a full integration of this technologies in the rehabilitation field more studies are needed.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)95-100
Number of pages6
JournalDisability and Rehabilitation: Assistive Technology
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2 Jan 2018


  • neuromotor phatologies
  • Rehabilitation
  • review
  • serious game
  • upper limb


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