Mechanical Efficiency During Gait is Altered by Multiple Sclerosis
During single limb stance phase, the leg can be modeled as an inverted pendulum and requires little to no work to move the center of mass; the primary workload is during the transition from one stance limb to another. Maintaining a uniform proportion of positive and negative work during transition phases is indicative of mechanical efficiency. Patients with multiple sclerosis (MS) suffer from increased fatigue. Analysis of work during gait may be used to help better understand the cause of fatigue in MS. Ten patients with MS and 10 matched controls walked at their self-selected pace along a ten-meter pathway. Group means of positive and negative work during initial double support, single support and terminal double support phases of gait were subjected to independent t-tests. Total positive and negative work was subjected to a dependent t-test. Gait speed was not different between groups. Positive and negative work values during both initial and terminal support phases were significantly different between the two groups. It appears that patients with MS demonstrate lower magnitudes of total stance work, although the proportion of negative work during initial double support and positive work during terminal double support is 1:2; similar to controls. In order for patients with MS to achieve a similar gait speed as controls, they potentially generate energy through the movement of the arms and trunk. MS patients are shifting the amount of work, performing increased positive work during initial double support and decreased positive work during terminal double support compared to controls.
Listed In: Biomechanics, Gait, Previous Winners,
Tagged In: External Work, Multiple Sclerosis, Walking
View PDF | View Poster Text | Contact Author