Habitual gait speed (HGS) and the figure-of-8 walking test (F8WT) are measures of walking ability that have been associated with mobility outcomes and disability among older adults. Our objective was to contrast the physiologic, health, and behavioral attributes underlying performance of these two walking tests among older adults with mobility limitations.
HGS and F8WT were the primary outcomes. HGS was measured as time needed to walk a 4-m straight course at usual pace from standstill position. F8WT was measured as time to walk in a figure-of-8 pattern at self-selected usual pace from standstill position. Separate multivariable linear regression models were constructed that predicted walking performance. Independent variables included physiologic, cognitive-behavioral health attributes, and demographic information.
Of 430 participants, 414 completed both walking tests. Participants were 67.7% female, had a mean age of 76.5 ± 7.0 years and a mean of 4.1 ± 2.0 chronic conditions. Mean HGS was 0.94 ± 0.23 m/s and mean F8WT was 8.80 ± 2.90 seconds. Within separate multivariable linear regression models (HGS: R (2) = .46, p model < .001; F8WT: R (2) = .47, p model < .001), attributes statistically significant within both models included: trunk extension endurance, ankle range of motion, leg press velocity at peak power, executive function, and sensory loss. Cognitive and physiologic attributes uniquely associated with F8WT were cognitive processing speed and self-efficacy, and reaction time and heel-to-floor time. Pain and peak leg press strength were associated with only HGS.
Both HGS and F8WT are useful tests of walking performance. Factors uniquely associated with F8WT suggest that it may be well suited for use among older adult patients with balance problems or at risk for falls.
"Previous work in older adults has suggested that the TUG is related to executive function and utilizes cognitive resources in part because of the challenges involved with planning and negotiating the turn that takes place about halfway through this test [42–44, 49]. Further, the cognitive demands of usual, straight line walking and curved walking, like a turn, differ . The cognitive remediation program apparently enhanced the cognitive domains needed for turning and the TUG, while it had less of an impact on the cognitive domains utilized during straight line walking. "
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Background: Patients with Parkinson's disease (PD) suffer from impaired gait and mobility. These changes in motor function have been associated with cognitive deficits that also commonly co-occur in PD, especially executive function (EF) and attention. Objective: We hypothesized that a cognitive remediation program would enhance gait and mobility. Methods: The 18 PD patients in this study were assessed at baseline and again at one and four weeks after completion of a 12 week long, home-based computerized cognitive training program. Subjects were asked to "play" computer games designed to improve EF and attention for 30 minutes a day, three times per week for 12 weeks, while seated. The Timed Up and Go (TUG), gait speed, and stride time variability quantified mobility. A previously validated, computerized neuropsychology battery quantified global cognitive function and its sub-domains. Results: Compared to pre-training values, global cognitive scores and time to complete the TUG significantly improved after the training. TUG components of turning speed and duration also improved. Other TUG components, gait speed, and variability did not change after training. Conclusions: These initial findings suggest that computerized cognitive training can improve cognitive function and has a beneficial carryover effect to certain aspects of mobility in patients with PD. Additional studies are required to replicate these findings and more fully assess the underlying mechanisms. Nonetheless, the present results underscore the motor-cognitive link in PD and suggest that computerized cognitive training may be applied as a therapeutic option to enhance mobility in patients with PD.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The identification and documentation of subclinical gait impairments in older adults may facilitate the appropriate use of interventions for preventing or delaying mobility disability. We tested whether measures derived from a single body-fixed sensor worn during traditional Timed Up and Go (TUG) testing could identify subclinical gait impairments in community dwelling older adults without mobility disability.
We used data from 432 older adults without dementia (mean age 83.30±7.04 yrs, 76.62% female) participating in the Rush Memory and Aging Project. The traditional TUG was conducted while subjects wore a body-fixed sensor. We derived measures of overall TUG performance and different subtasks including transitions (sit-to-stand, stand-to-sit), walking, and turning. Multivariate analysis was used to compare persons with and without mobility disability and to compare individuals with and without Instrumental Activities of Daily Living disability (IADL-disability), all of whom did not have mobility disability.
As expected, individuals with mobility disability performed worse on all TUG subtasks (p<0.03), compared to those who had no mobility disability. Individuals without mobility disability but with IADL disability had difficulties with turns, had lower yaw amplitude (p<0.004) during turns, were slower (p<0.001), and had less consistent gait (p<0.02).
A single body-worn sensor can be employed in the community-setting to complement conventional gait testing. It provides a wide range of quantitative gait measures that appear to help to identify subclinical gait impairments in older adults.
PLoS ONE 07/2013; 8(7):e68885. DOI:10.1371/journal.pone.0068885 · 3.23 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The primary aims of this study were to design prediction models based on a functional marker (preoperative gait speed) to predict readiness for home discharge time of 90 mins or less and to identify those at risk for unplanned admissions after elective ambulatory surgery.
This prospective observational cohort study evaluated all patients scheduled for elective ambulatory surgery. Home discharge readiness and unplanned admissions were the primary outcomes. Independent variables included preoperative gait speed, heart rate, and total anesthesia time. The relationship between all predictors and each primary outcome was determined in separate multivariable logistic regression models.
After adjustment for covariates, gait speed with adjusted odds ratio of 3.71 (95% confidence interval, 1.21-11.26), P = 0.02, was independently associated with early home discharge readiness of 90 mins or less. Importantly, gait speed dichotomized as greater or less than 1 m/sec predicted unplanned admissions, with odds ratio of 0.35 (95% confidence interval, 0.16-0.76, P = 0.008) for those with speeds 1 m/sec or greater in comparison with those with speeds less than 1 m/sec. In a separate model, history of cardiac surgery with adjusted odds ratio of 7.5 (95% confidence interval, 2.34-24.41; P = 0.001) was independently associated with unplanned admissions after elective ambulatory surgery, when other covariates were held constant.
This study demonstrates the use of novel prediction models based on gait speed testing to predict early home discharge and to identify those patients at risk for unplanned admissions after elective ambulatory surgery.
American journal of physical medicine & rehabilitation / Association of Academic Physiatrists 10/2013; 92(10):849-63. DOI:10.1097/PHM.0b013e3182a51ac5 · 2.20 Impact Factor
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