Evaluation of a New Gait Assessment for Clinical Practice

Volume 1, Issue 2, December 2016     |     PP. 41-65      |     PDF (863 K)    |     Pub. Date: January 2, 2017
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Patric Schubert, Hochschule Fresenius, University of Applied Sciences, Institute for Complex Health Research, Idstein, Germany
Magnus Liebherr, Hochschule Fresenius, University of Applied Sciences, Institute for Complex Health Research, Idstein, Germany
Stephanie Kersten, Hochschule Fresenius, University of Applied Sciences, Institute for Complex Health Research, Idstein, Germany
Christian T Haas, Hochschule Fresenius, University of Applied Sciences, Institute for Complex Health Research, Idstein, Germany

Objectives: Gait is often affected in people with motor disorders. Obtaining feasible parameters from gait measurements is a central issue in clinical reasoning. A key problem is that practicable tests lack sensitivity of underlying parameters and vice versa. To examine gait impairments or to evaluate interventions aimed at improving gait disorders, efficient measurements are necessary. Therefore, we developed a new device-independent gait assessment which allows the quantification of spatiotemporal parameters from over ground walking.Methods: 37 healthy subjects (CG), 14 patients with multiple sclerosis (MS) and 20 patients with Parkinson’s disease (PD) walked along a corridor at their self-paced velocity. A standardized new gait assessment without any technical devices was conducted. Subjects performed five walking trials of different lengths. Trespassing of predefined lines was used to determine real walking distance. Spatiotemporal gait parameters comprised gait velocity, stride length, and stride duration. Validity and reliability analyses were conducted.Results: The gait assessment showed highly valid and reliable results for each parameter and for each distance. Shorter walking distances showed a higher coefficient of variation which was however consistent for distances above 20m. We found significant differences between CG and MS, but no significance between CG and PD. Specific reference data for each parameter is presented.Conclusions: It is demonstrated that relevant biomechanical gait parameters could be derived from this new gait assessment with minimal effort. Hence, it could be easily implemented into clinical routines. We recommend performing at least five gait trials with at least 20m walking distance to achieve best results.

Gait analysis, Biomechanical parameters, Parkinson’s disease, Multiple sclerosis

Cite this paper
Patric Schubert, Magnus Liebherr, Stephanie Kersten, Christian T Haas, Evaluation of a New Gait Assessment for Clinical Practice , SCIREA Journal of Health. Volume 1, Issue 2, December 2016 | PP. 41-65.


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