Analyzing gait variability and dual-task interference in patients with Parkinson’s disease and freezing by means of the word-color Stroop test
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The ability to carry out two tasks at once is critical to effective functioning in the real world and deficits are termed Dual-task interference or effect—DTE. DTE substantially compromised the gait of subjects with Parkinson’s disease and freezing of gait (PD + FOG), leading to exaggerated slowing, increasing gait dysrhythmicity, and inducing FOG episodes. This study aimed to investigate the DTE in gait variability of subjects with PD and freezing of gait (PD + FOG). Thirty-three patients with PD + FOG and 14 healthy individuals (REFERENCE) took part at this study. Two gait conditions were analyzed: usual walking (single task) and walking while taking the word-color Stroop test (dual task). The computed variables were as follows: gait velocity, step length, step timing, gait asymmetry, variability measures and DTE of each variable. The PD + FOG group has presented negative DTE values for all analyzed variables, indicating dual task cost. The REFERENCE group has presented dual-task benefits for step length standard deviation and step time. Differences between both groups and conditions were found for all variables, except for step time. Taking the word-color Stroop test while walking led to a larger dual-task cost in subjects with PD + FOG.
KeywordsParkinson’s disease Freezing of gait Gait Dual task Word-color Stroop test
Compliance with ethical standards
Conflict of interest
The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest
Human and animal rights
All procedures performed in studies involving human participants were in accordance with the ethical standards of the institutional and/or national research committee and with the 1964 Helsinki Declaration and its later amendments or comparable ethical standards.
The present study complied with ethical standards and participants provided informed consent.
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