Prediction of responsiveness of gait variables to rehabilitation training in Parkinson's disease

Mariano Serrao, Giorgia Chini, Guido Caramanico, Michelangelo Bartolo, Stefano Filippo Castiglia, Alberto Ranavolo, Carmela Conte, Teresa Venditto, Gianluca Coppola, Cherubino Di Lorenzo, Patrizio Cardinali, Francesco Pierelli

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Background: Gait disorders represent one of the most disabling features of Parkinson's disease, which may benefit from rehabilitation. No consistent evidence exists about which gait biomechanical factors can be modified by rehabilitation and which clinical characteristic can predict rehabilitation-induced improvements. Objectives: The aims of the study were as follows: (i) to recognize the gait parameters modifiable by a short-term rehabilitation program; (ii) to evaluate the gait parameters that can normalize after rehabilitation; and (iii) to identify clinical variables predicting improvements in gait function after rehabilitation. Methods: Thirty-six patients affected by idiopathic Parkinson's disease in Hoehn-Yahr stage 1-3 and 22 healthy controls were included in the study. Both clinical and instrumental (gait analysis) evaluations were performed before and after a 10-weeks rehabilitation treatment. Time-distance parameters, lower limb joint, and trunk kinematics were measured. Results: At baseline evaluation with matched speed, almost all gait parameters were significantly different between patients and healthy controls. After the 10-weeks rehabilitation, most gait parameters improved, and spatial asymmetry and trunk rotation normalized. Multiple linear regression of gender combined with Unified Parkinson's Disease Rating Scale-III predicted both ΔSpeed and ΔStep length of both sides; gender combined with Unified Parkinson's Disease Rating Scale-II predicted ΔCadence; age combined with Hoehn-Yahr score and disease duration predicted 1trunk rotation range of motion. Conclusions: Impaired gait parameters are susceptible to improvement by rehabilitation, and younger men with Parkinson's disease who are less severely affected and at early disease stage are more susceptible to improvements in gait function after a 10-weeks rehabilitation program.

Original languageEnglish
Article number826
JournalFrontiers in Neurology
Issue numberJUL
Publication statusPublished - Aug 1 2019


  • Gait analysis
  • Gait improvement
  • Multiple linear regression
  • Parkinson's disease
  • Rehabilitation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neurology
  • Clinical Neurology


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