Tuesday, 22 November 2011

The Timed Up & Go Test: Its Reliability and Association With Lower-Limb Impairments and Locomotor Capacities in People With Chronic Stroke

The aim of the study was to examine test-retest reliability of the Timed Up & Go test, its ability to differentiate subjects with chronic stroke from healthy elderly subjects, and its associations with ankle plantarflexor spasticity, ankle muscle strength, gait performance, and distance walked in 6 minutes in subjects with chronic stroke. The individual measures used for the test was the Berg scale and the Barthel index.

For this study twenty one participants were used for the task (ten healthy elderly adults and eleven elderly adults with chronic stroke). The study also conducted four clinical and laboratory measures of the lower limb functions. They are spasticity of the plantarflexors, maximum isometric voluntary contraction of the ankle muscles, gait performance and a six minute walk test.

The timed up and go test required subjects were required to stand up from a chair with armrests, walk 3m, turn around, return to the chair, and sit down. The time taken to complete this task was measured in seconds with a stopwatch.

Results showed the spasticity in the ankle plantarflexors in the affected legs of subjects with stroke was significantly (P_.001) higher compared with their unaffected legs and with the mean scores of both legs in the healthy elderly subjects. For gait parameters, patients with stroke walked significantly (P_.001) slower (mean gait velocity, 48.7_22.1cm/s) than the healthy elderly subjects (mean gait velocity,125.6_23.8cm/s), with significantly (P_.001) reduced cadence (84.3_20.7 steps/min) compared with the healthy elderly subjects.

The study concluded that results show that there was a high degree of test-retest

reliability in the Timed Up & Go test scores in elderly subjects with chronic stroke. These scores were capable of detecting differences in functional mobility between healthy elderly subjects and subjects with stroke.

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