Virtual Reality

, Volume 18, Issue 1, pp 73–87 | Cite as

Toward a validation of cyber-interventions for stress disorders based on stress inoculation training: a systematic review

  • Silvia SerinoEmail author
  • Stefano Triberti
  • Daniela Villani
  • Pietro Cipresso
  • Andrea Gaggioli
  • Giuseppe Riva
SI: Cyberinterventions


New advanced technologies have recently emerged as a potentially effective way for delivering stress management techniques. Specifically, the stress inoculation training (SIT) represents a validated approach to manage stress in several settings, and research is growing related to this clinical protocol combined with advanced technologies. This review aims to outline the state of the art of cyber-interventions based on SIT methodology (cyber-SIT). In the current review, we deeply analyzed and discussed three aspects of the selected studies: (1) the type of technological devices used for delivering cyber-SIT; (2) the sampling strategies; (3) and the stress-related measures for assessing the effectiveness of cyber-SIT. The results of this systematic review suggest the potential efficacy of cyber-SIT for managing psychological stress in several settings. Considering cyber-SIT for psychological stress, controlled trials testing a greater number of participants are needed. Other future challenges include adopting better inclusion/exclusion criteria, standardized outcome measures, and different conditions for comparing the effect and/or the integration of different technological devices. In conclusion, as the cyber-SIT may play an important role in the future clinical psychology, it is crucial to enhance the validation of this approach from a methodological point of view.


Stress inoculation training Virtual reality Validation Stress management Systematic review Cyber-interventions 



The present work was supported by the European-funded project “Interstress”–Interreality in the management and treatment of stress-related disorders (FP7-247685) and by the research project “NeuroVirtual 3D,” funded by Regione Piemonte (Grant No. FA 211-432C-2012).


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag London 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  • Silvia Serino
    • 1
    Email author
  • Stefano Triberti
    • 2
  • Daniela Villani
    • 2
  • Pietro Cipresso
    • 1
  • Andrea Gaggioli
    • 1
    • 2
  • Giuseppe Riva
    • 1
    • 2
  1. 1.Applied Technology for Neuro-Psychology LabIRCCS Istituto Auxologico ItalianoMilanItaly
  2. 2.ICE-NETUniversità Cattolica del Sacro CuoreMilanItaly

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