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Hearing voices is probably the worst form of acoustic hallucinations; which can be experienced as severely disturbing and is influenced by diverse factors including the ability of the individual to influence and control the hallucinatory experience itself. In recent years virtual reality has become a treatment option. In the so-called AVATAR Therapy, patients with schizophrenia and acoustic hallucinations design a visual and auditory recreation (avatar) of the entity to which they attribute their hallucinations. Working with a therapist over the course of several sessions, participants change the avatar from controlling to benevolent. Avatar Therapy involves similar processes to learning and cognitive restructuring, comparable to other psychotherapeutic interventions. The investigators plan to conduct an interventional study using a cross-over design, to compare the feasibility and efficacy of virtual reality avatar therapy for patients with acoustic hallucinations (independent of psychiatric diagnosis) with a cognitive behavioural group therapy aimed to improve social competence.
Virtual Reality Avatar Therapy (VRAT), Assertiveness Training Program (ATP)
Psychiatrische Universitätsklinik Zürich
Not yet recruiting
Psychiatric University Hospital, Zurich
Published on BioPortfolio: 2019-09-27T06:30:47-0400
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Treatment technique in a virtual environment which allows the participant to experience a sense of presence in an immersive, computer-generated, three-dimensional, interactive environment that minimizes avoidance behavior and facilitates emotional involvement. (from Curr Psychiatry Rep (2010) 12:298)
Using computer technology to create and maintain an environment and project a user's physical presence in that environment allowing the user to interact with it.
A controlled learning environment that closely represents reality.
A highly customized interactive medium or program that allows individuals to learn and practice real world activities in an accurate, realistic, safe and secure environment.
Financial support for training including both student stipends and loans and training grants to institutions.
Hearing, auditory perception, or audition is the ability to perceive sound by detecting vibrations, changes in the pressure of the surrounding medium through time, through an organ such as the ear. Sound may be heard through solid, liquid, or gaseous mat...
Psychiatry is the study of mental disorders and their diagnosis, management and prevention. Conditions include schizophrenia, severe depression and panic disorders among others. There are pharmaceutical treatments as well as other therapies to help...