No relevant association of kinematic gait parameters with Health-related Quality of Life in Parkinson’s disease

BACKGROUND Health-related Quality of Life (HrQoL) is probably the most important outcome parameter for the evaluation and management of chronic diseases. As this parameter is subjective and prone to bias, there is an urgent need to identify objective surrogate markers. Gait velocity has been shown to be associated with HrQoL in numerous chronic diseases, such as Parkinson's disease (PD). With the development and wide availability of simple-to-use wearable sensors and sophisticated gait algorithms, kinematic gait parameters may soon be implemented in clinical routine management. However, the association of such kinematic gait parameters with HrQoL in PD has not been assessed to date. METHODS Kinematic gait parameters from a 20-meter walk from 43 PD patients were extracted using a validated wearable sensor system. They were compared with the Visual Analogue Scale of the Euro-Qol-5D (EQ-5D VAS) by performing a multiple regression analysis, with the International Classification of Functioning, Disability and Health (ICF) model as a framework. RESULTS Use of assistive gait equipment, but no kinematic gait parameter, was significantly associated with HrQoL. CONCLUSION The widely accepted concept of a positive association between gait velocity and HrQoL may, at least in PD, be driven by relatively independent parameters, such as assistive gait equipment.


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