Chronic Pain Congress 2022

Marta Matamala-Gomez

Marta Matamala Gómez obtained her PhD in biomedicine, with cumlaude qualification, specifically in the field of cognitive neuroscience, in 2017 at the Faculty of Medicine of the University of Barcelona. During her PhD she participated in several European projects with the aim of developing effective virtual reality environments for upper limb motor rehabilitation and chronic pain by using virtual bodies that allowed modifying the body perception of these patients. Specifically, he actively participated in the conceptual development and design of a virtual reality program for upper extremity rehabilitation, i-cortex, which is currently being commercialized by the company Virtual Body Works S.L. The main studies of his thesis helped to demonstrate the clinical efficacy of such software in patients with upper extremity fractures and stroke patients. At the end of his doctoral period he moved to Italy, to the University of Pavia, to continue participating in research projects to demonstrate the use of virtual reality as a tool for telerehabilitation in patients with neurological diseases such as stroke, Parkinson's and Multiple Sclerosis. During his stay in Pavia he also conducted studies with chronic migraine patients to investigate the effect of the use of positive visual feedback techniques on the pain level of these patients. Later she won a public competition to work as a post-doc at the University of Milano-Bicocca and participated in two Italian National projects for the development of new technologies in the field of telerehabilitation for patients with chronic pathologies. At the same time, a collaboration was established with the Instituto Auxologico of Milan, to study how the induction of virtual body possession in patients with anorexia could help to improve their body perception. During this post-doctoral period she coordinated research fellows in their research activities. In March 2021 he won another public competition at the University of Milano-Bicocca to develop research activities to study the correlation between the use of immersive virtual reality systems and the brain. Specifically, the project consists in further investigating how to modulate the corporeal perception through the induction of possession of a virtual body and what are its effects on the brain. During her scientific career Marta Matamala-Gomez has participated in different national and international congresses for the public dissemination of her studies. She has participated as organizer of several workshops and symposiums. In the last two years she has been invited to be external evaluator of international research projects (Canada and Poland) as well as to be part of the group of editors in two research topics related to the use of technology and corporeal illusions in clinical practice. She has also been invited to participate in the writing of two book chapters organized by the Giustino Fortunato University (Italy) on the use of new technologies in neurorehabilitation, and by the Victoria Wellington University. Currently, Marta has won a grant as a post-doctoral researcher under the Beatriu de Pinòs program at the University of Barcelona in the Brainvitge Cognition and Brain Plasticity Unit, with the objective of studying how to use sound frequencies to induce corporeal and environmental virtual illusions and their application in clinical practice.



Unidad de Estrategias de Afrontamiento Activo del Dolor