Gait abnormalities in minimally impaired multiple sclerosis patients

M. G. Benedetti, R. Piperno, L. Simoncini, P. Bonato, A. Tonini, S. Giannini'

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Subclinical evidence of gait abnormalities were identified in a group of seven patients with Multiple Sclerosis, EDSS scared 0-2, without functional limitations. A movement analysis technique was used to identify gait parameters indicative of impaired motor function during walking. Abnormalities related primarily to time-distance parameters (reduced speed of progression, shorter strides, prolonged double support phase) and muscular function (premature recruitment of gastrocnemius and late relaxation of tibialis anterior during stance phase) were identified regardless the severity of the clinical score. The gait analysis procedure was able to provide the clinician with evidence of motor abnormalities prior to functional disturbance observable by a trained physician. These minimal dysfunctions may have resulted from reflex mechanisms impaired by delayed transmission through long loop pathways or else as a result of a nonspecific protective gait strategy to improve balance control. The technique described in this study may be useful to identify earlier starting points for follow-up and physiotherapy.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)363-368
Number of pages6
JournalMultiple Sclerosis Journal
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - Oct 1999


  • Gait abnormalities
  • Movement analysis
  • Multiple sclerosis
  • Surface electromyography

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Clinical Neurology


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