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Accelerometry reveals differences in gait variability between patients with multiple sclerosis and healthy controls


Huisinga, JM and Mancini, M and St George, RJ and Horak, FB, Accelerometry reveals differences in gait variability between patients with multiple sclerosis and healthy controls, Annals of Biomedical Engineering, 41, (8) pp. 1670-1679. ISSN 0090-6964 (2013) [Refereed Article]


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Copyright 2012 Biomedical Engineering Society. The final publication is available at Springer via

DOI: doi:10.1007/s10439-012-0697-y


Variability of movement reflects important information for the maintenance of the health of the system. For pathological populations, changes in variability during gait signal the presence of abnormal motor control strategies. For persons with multiple sclerosis (PwMS), extensive gait problems have been reported including changes in gait variability. While previous studies have focused on footfall variability, the present study used accelerometers on the trunk to measure variability during walking. Thus, the purpose of this study was to examine the variability of the acceleration pattern of the upper and lower trunk in PwMS compared to healthy controls. We extracted linear and nonlinear measures of gait variability from 30 s of steady state walking for 15 PwMS and 15 age-matched healthy controls. PwMS had altered variability compared to controls with greater Lyapunov exponent in the ML (p < 0.001) and AP (p < 0.001) directions, and greater frequency dispersion in the ML direction (p = 0.034). PwMS also demonstrated greater mean velocity in the ML direction (p = 0.045) and lower root mean square of acceleration in the AP direction (p = 0.040). These findings indicate that PwMS have altered structure of variability of the trunk during gait compared to healthy controls and agree with previous findings related to changes in gait variability in PwMS.

Item Details

Item Type:Refereed Article
Keywords:nonlinear, trunk, steady state, Lyapunov exponent, gait, multiple sclerosis
Research Division:Health Sciences
Research Group:Sports science and exercise
Research Field:Motor control
Objective Division:Health
Objective Group:Clinical health
Objective Field:Clinical health not elsewhere classified
UTAS Author:St George, RJ (Dr Rebecca St George)
ID Code:116317
Year Published:2013
Web of Science® Times Cited:71
Deposited By:Psychology
Deposited On:2017-05-05
Last Modified:2017-12-06
Downloads:60 View Download Statistics

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