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Virtual reality in the therapy of anxiety disorders and related conditions

Conférence Midi

Online conference

Online conference
Please note: the link will be active on the day of the conference

Speaker : Iveta Fajnerová, PhD., Head of the research center, Virtual reality in mental health and Neurosciences, National Institute of Mental Health, Czech Republic

Abstract: The talk will discuss the use of virtual reality (VR) as a tool for psychotherapy targeting anxiety disorders and related compulsive disorders. The presentation will first summarize the current knowledge in the field of VR therapy and present current work of the VR research group at the National Institute of Mental Health in Czech Republic.  The presented studies presented focus mainly on exposure therapy and relaxation therapy techniques with application to phobias (specific phobias, social phobias, and agoraphobia), generalized anxiety disorder and obsessive-compulsive disorder. In addition, utilization of VR tools in the pain relief and distress management in palliative care will be mentioned. Individual VR therapeutical methods will be presented with emphasis on the feasibility, validity, and effectiveness of these approaches in the target populations. The talk will also address the development of these VR methods from a human-centered design perspective and the implementation of virtual characters to create needed social element.

Funding: The presented studies were supported by the Czech Technology Agency under the grant projects ÉTA TL03000223, ZETA TJ01000010, and GAMA project “Braintech” TP01010062,  by the Czech Health Research Council project NU23-04-00402, and by the Charles University research programme “Cooperatio-Neurosciences”.


Iveta Fajnerova studied psychology and neurobiology and obtained her PhD in neuroscience at the 3rd Medical Faculty of the Charles University in Prague. She is a head of the VR Research centre at the National Institute of Mental Health in Czech Republic. Her work focuses on the use of VR in research, diagnostics, and therapy of psychiatric disorders, with emphasis on anxiety disorders, obsessive-compulsive disorder and cognitive impairments.

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