Article ID: ra.2018-0045
Dramatic breakthroughs in the treatment and assessment of neurological diseases are lacking. We believe that conventional methods have several limitations. Computerized technologies, including virtual reality, augmented reality, and robot assistant systems, are advancing at a rapid pace. In this study, we used Parkinson’s disease (PD) as an example to elucidate how the latest computerized technologies can improve the diagnosis and treatment of neurological diseases. Dopaminergic medication and deep brain stimulation remain the most effective interventions for treating PD. Subjective scales, such as the Unified Parkinson’s Disease Rating Scale and the Hoehn and Yahr stage, are still the most widely used assessments. Wearable sensors, virtual reality, augmented reality, and robot assistant systems are increasingly being used for evaluation of patients with PD. The use of such computerized technologies can result in safe, objective, real-time behavioral assessments. Our experiences and understanding of PD have led us to believe that such technologies can provide real-time assessment, which will revolutionize the traditional assessment and treatment of PD. New technologies are desired that can revolutionize PD treatment and facilitate real-time adjustment of treatment based on motor fluctuations, such as telediagnosis systems and “smart treatment systems.” The use of these technologies will substantially improve both the assessment and the treatment of neurological diseases before next-generation treatments, such as stem cell and genetic therapy, and next-generation assessments, can be clinically practiced, although the current level of artificial intelligence cannot replace the role of clinicians.