Effects of instructed meditation augmented by computer-rendered artificial virtual environment on heart rate variability

    Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference proceeding contributionpeer-review

    7 Citations (Scopus)

    Abstract

    Previous research has supported the use of virtual reality (VR) to decrease stress, anxiety, perceptions of pain, and increase positive affect. However, the effect of VR on blood pressure (BP) and autonomic function in healthy populations have not been explored. This study quantifies the effect of instructed meditation augmented by a virtual environment (VE) on BP and heart rate variability (HRV) during rest and following physical (isometric handgrip) or mental (serial sevens subtraction) stress. Sixteen healthy participants underwent all conditions, and those that responded to the stress tests were included in the analysis of stress recovery. Results showed that under resting conditions, VE had no significant effect on BP or HRV when compared to seated rest and the VE video on a 2D screen. Following serial sevens, VE maintained the increased low frequency (LF) power of HRV (66±4 normalized units (n.u.)) compared to seated rest (55±5 n.u., p=0.0060); VE maintained the decreased high frequency (HF) power of HRV (34±4 n.u.) compared to seated rest (44±5 n.u., p=0.014); and VE maintained the increased LF/HF ratio (2.4±0.5) compared to seated rest (1.6±0.3, p=0.012). Hence, after mental stress, VE sustains the increased sympathetic drive and reduced parasympathetic drive. VE may act as a stimulatory driver for autonomic activity and BP. Further studies are required to investigate the effect of different types of VE on BP and autonomic function.

    Original languageEnglish
    Title of host publication2018 40th Annual International Conference of the IEEE Engineering in Medicine and Biology Society (EMBC)
    PublisherInstitute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE)
    Pages2768-2771
    Number of pages4
    Volume2018-July
    ISBN (Electronic)9781538636466
    ISBN (Print)9781538636473
    DOIs
    Publication statusPublished - 1 Jul 2018
    Event40th Annual International Conference of the IEEE Engineering in Medicine and Biology Society, EMBC 2018 - Honolulu, United States
    Duration: 18 Jul 201821 Jul 2018

    Conference

    Conference40th Annual International Conference of the IEEE Engineering in Medicine and Biology Society, EMBC 2018
    Country/TerritoryUnited States
    CityHonolulu
    Period18/07/1821/07/18

    Fingerprint

    Dive into the research topics of 'Effects of instructed meditation augmented by computer-rendered artificial virtual environment on heart rate variability'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

    Cite this