Beyond the classic clinical description, recent studies have quantitatively evaluated gait and balance dysfunction in cerebellar ataxias by means of modern motion analysis systems. These systems have the aim of clearly and quantitatively describing the differences, with respect to healthy subjects, in kinematic, kinetic, and surface electromyography variables, establishing the basis for a rehabilitation strategy and assessing its efficacy. The main findings which characterize the gait pattern of cerebellar patients are: increased step width, reduced ankle joint range of motion with increased coactivation of the antagonist muscles, and increased stride-to-stride variability. Whereas the former is a compensatory strategy adopted by patients to keep the center of mass within the base of support, the latter indicates the inability of patients to maintain dynamic balance through a regular walking pattern and may reflect the primary deficit directly related to cerebellar dysfunction and the consequent lack of muscle coordination during walking. Moreover, during the course of the disease, with the progressive loss of walking autonomy, step length, and lower-limb joint range of motion are drastically reduced. As to the joint coordination defect, abnormal intralimb joint coordination during walking, in terms of both joint kinematics and interaction torques, has been reported in several studies. Furthermore, patients with cerebellar ataxia show a poor intersegmental coordination, with a chaotic coordinative behavior between trunk and hip, leading to increased upper-body oscillations that affect gait performance and stability, sustaining a vicious circle that transforms the upper body into a generator of perturbations. The use of motion analysis laboratories allows a deeper segmental and global characterization of walking impairment in these patients and can shed light on the nature of both the primary specific gait disorder and compensatory mechanisms. Such deeper understanding might reasonably represent a valid prerequisite for establishing better-targeted rehabilitation strategies.

Neurophysiology of gait / Serrao, M.; Ranavolo, A.; Casali, C.. - (2018), pp. 299-303. - HANDBOOK OF CLINICAL NEUROLOGY.

Neurophysiology of gait

Serrao M.
;
Ranavolo A.;Casali C.
2018

Abstract

Beyond the classic clinical description, recent studies have quantitatively evaluated gait and balance dysfunction in cerebellar ataxias by means of modern motion analysis systems. These systems have the aim of clearly and quantitatively describing the differences, with respect to healthy subjects, in kinematic, kinetic, and surface electromyography variables, establishing the basis for a rehabilitation strategy and assessing its efficacy. The main findings which characterize the gait pattern of cerebellar patients are: increased step width, reduced ankle joint range of motion with increased coactivation of the antagonist muscles, and increased stride-to-stride variability. Whereas the former is a compensatory strategy adopted by patients to keep the center of mass within the base of support, the latter indicates the inability of patients to maintain dynamic balance through a regular walking pattern and may reflect the primary deficit directly related to cerebellar dysfunction and the consequent lack of muscle coordination during walking. Moreover, during the course of the disease, with the progressive loss of walking autonomy, step length, and lower-limb joint range of motion are drastically reduced. As to the joint coordination defect, abnormal intralimb joint coordination during walking, in terms of both joint kinematics and interaction torques, has been reported in several studies. Furthermore, patients with cerebellar ataxia show a poor intersegmental coordination, with a chaotic coordinative behavior between trunk and hip, leading to increased upper-body oscillations that affect gait performance and stability, sustaining a vicious circle that transforms the upper body into a generator of perturbations. The use of motion analysis laboratories allows a deeper segmental and global characterization of walking impairment in these patients and can shed light on the nature of both the primary specific gait disorder and compensatory mechanisms. Such deeper understanding might reasonably represent a valid prerequisite for establishing better-targeted rehabilitation strategies.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: http://hdl.handle.net/11573/1473295
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