Turkish Journal of Gastroenterology
Gastrointestinal Tract - Original Article

The Effect of Virtual Reality on Pain and Anxiety During Colonoscopy: A Randomized Controlled Trial


Department of Nursing, Kastamonu University, School of Health Sciences, Kastamonu, Turkey


Division of Gastroenterology, Department of Internal Medicine, Kastamonu University School of Medicine, Kastamonu, Turkey

Turk J Gastroenterol 2021; 32: 451-457
DOI: 10.5152/tjg.2021.191081
Read: 2345 Downloads: 676 Published: 01 May 2021

Background: The aim of the study is to evaluate the effect of virtual reality application during a colonoscopy on the pain and anxiety experienced by patients.

Methods: The study was conducted as experimental, randomized, controlled research. The study was carried out between October 15, 2017 and May 20, 2018 in the Endoscopy Unit of a Public Hospital in northern Turkey. The study sample consisted of 60 patients who underwent colonoscopy. The patients were divided into 2 groups by using simple randomization. The patients in the experimental group watched virtual reality applications during colonoscopy, whereas the patients in the control group underwent standard colonoscopy protocol. Colonoscopy was performed on patients in both groups by the same gastroenterologist without the use of anesthesia. The demographic data of both groups, pain levels during and after the procedure, before and after the procedure anxiety levels were evaluated.

Results: The mean age of the patients in the experimental group was 56.33 ± 11.81, the mean age of the patients in the control group was 56.20 ± 15.62. There was no statistically significant difference between the pre- and post-operative state anxiety score averages of the patients in the experimental and control groups. There was a statistically significant difference between the trait anxiety scores (P < .000) and pain scores (P < .03) during the procedure between both groups.

Conclusion: The virtual reality application was found to reduce patients’ pain during the colonoscopy procedure. The virtual reality application, an easily available, inexpensive, and non-invasive method, can be used by nurses in pain management during colonoscopy.

Cite this article as: Karaveli Çakır S, Evirgen S. The effect of virtual reality on pain and anxiety during colonoscopy: A randomized controlled trial. Turk J Gastroenterol. 2021; 32(5): 451-457.

EISSN 2148-5607