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Protocol Details

Development of Virtual Reality-based Interventions to Strengthen Cognitive Skillsets Related to Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD): A Pilot Phase I and Randomized Controlled Phase II Trial

This study is currently recruiting participants.

Summary | Eligibility | Citations | Contacts




Sponsoring Institute

National Human Genome Research Institute (NHGRI)

Recruitment Detail

Type: Participants currently recruited/enrolled
Gender: Male & Female
Min Age: 10 Years
Max Age: 16 Years

Referral Letter Required


Population Exclusion(s)



Smart Games;
Virtual Reality;
Cognitive Training

Recruitment Keyword(s)



Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder

Investigational Drug(s)


Investigational Device(s)



Behavioral: Floreo Virtual Reality application

Supporting Site

National Human Genome Research Institute


Children with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) often have cognitive problems. It may be hard for them to control their behaviors, concentrate for long periods, or make decisions. This can affect their education, friendships, and daily life. Virtual reality-based games may help improve cognitive skills in children with ADHD. It may also help change how the brain functions.


To see if virtual reality-based games help improve thinking skills and brain function in children with ADHD.


Children aged 10 to 16 years with ADHD.


We will first do a pilot study, meaning that everyone will receive the games. If this is successful, we will then conduct a randomized controlled trial, meaning that some participants will be randomly assigned to the full version of the games and some will be randomly assigned to a limited version. Participants will be screened. Their physical and mental health, medical and family history, and intellectual and emotional development will be evaluated. They will have tests of their mood, memory, attention, thinking, and behavior. Blood or saliva may be collected. Participants may have an MRI scan of the brain.

Participants will receive a set of virtual reality games. The set includes 4 different games all played using a virtual reality headset. The participant will play the games for 20 minutes 5 days a week for 4 weeks.

The parent or caregiver will start each game using an iPad. Each of the games is designed to help the participant practice specific cognitive skills. These include inhibition control, processing speed, temporal information processing, and working memory.

Participants will have interviews each week. They will answer questions about motion sickness, eye strain, headache, and any other side effects, as well as number of game sessions played.

Blood or saliva tests and the MRI may be repeated after the last game session. For the pilot, participants will have a final interview at the study end. For the full trial, a 1-month follow-up visit will be done by telehealth.

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In order to be eligible to participate, an individual must meet all of the following criteria:

1. Children must provide informed assent and parents must provide informed consent to participate in the study.

2. Any gender identity, sex assigned at birth or race/ethnicity.

3. Aged between 10 and 16 years of age, including all months leading up to age 17.

4. Meets diagnosis for ADHD, predominately inattentive or combined presentations, or a specified presentation of having prominent symptoms of inattention that are impairing in two or more settings (but not numerous enough to meet a diagnosis of inattentive or combined presentation).

5. Stated willingness to comply with all study procedures and lifestyle considerations and availability for the duration of the study.

6. If treated for ADHD with psychostimulants, willing to withdraw medication three days prior to baseline assessments and to stay off medication until completion of the post-intervention assessment. Not receiving any other psychotropic medication for at least 30 days prior to baseline assessment.


An individual who meets any of the following criteria will be excluded from participation in this study:

1. Cognitively not capable of performing study procedures. Indications of a lack of cognitive capacity could include a known IQ under 70, or a history from the screening interview that implies global intellectual disabilities (e.g., placement in a school for children with intellectual disability etc.)

2. History of severe migraines, vertigo, epilepsy (with the exception of febrile seizures), or serious balance disorders.

3. Impairments in uncorrected visual acuity that would interfere with engagement with the VR training.

4. Known to be pregnant.

5. Psychotic disorders (including schizophrenia, psychosis not otherwise specified), current substance dependence. Other psychiatric disorders elicited on the interview are not considered exclusionary provided that ADHD is considered to be one of the dominant sources of impairment for the child.

6. Considered a suicide risk as determined during the clinical interview at baseline.

7. Any other medical or psychiatric condition that in the opinion of the PI may confound study data/assessments (e.g., limitations in mobility that would render the VR headset unusable).

8. Recent (within three months) treatment with other cognitive training interventions (e.g., Cogmed) for ADHD.

9. The VR equipment produces excessive discomfort to the child in the opinion of the PI (e.g., including participants with small interpupillary distances (IPD) that are only able to see blurry

images on the VR headset, or children showing signs of undue neck and upper body strain or fatigue while trying the headset).

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Not Provided

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Principal Investigator

Referral Contact

For more information:

Wallace P. Shaw, M.D.
National Human Genome Research Institute (NHGRI)
(301) 451-4010

Wallace P. Shaw, M.D.
National Human Genome Research Institute (NHGRI)
(301) 451-4010

Office of Patient Recruitment
National Institutes of Health Clinical Center (CC)
Building 61, 10 Cloister Court
Bethesda, Maryland 20892
Toll Free: 1-800-411-1222
Local Phone: 301-451-4383
TTY: TTY Users Dial 7-1-1

Clinical Trials Number:


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