Objective: To assess the validity and reliability of 3 timed walking tests (Timed Up & Go [TUG], 10-meter walk test [10MWT], 6-minute walk test) in subjects with spinal cord injury (SCI).
Design: Cross-sectional study and repeated assessments.
Setting: The SCI center of a university hospital in Switzerland.
Participants: Validity was assessed by using the data of 75 patients with SCI, and reliability was determined with 22 patients with SCI.
Intervention: Patients performed the timed tests and the Walking Index for Spinal Cord Injury II (WISCI II) on the same day. Three measurements within 7 days were taken to assess reliability.
Main outcome measures: The measures were scatterplots, correlation coefficients ( r ), and the Bland-Altman plot. Validity was determined in patients with different walking abilities.
Results: Overall, correlation of the 3 timed walking tests was excellent with each other (| r |>.88) and moderate with the WISCI II (| r |>.60). The correlation between the timed tests for patients with poor walking ability remained high (| r |>.70) but decreased in WISCI II (| r |<.35). High correlation coefficients ( r >.97) were found for intra- and interrater reliability. However, TUG and 10MWT reliability were negatively influenced by a poor walking function.
Conclusions: The 3 timed tests are valid and reliable measures for assessing walking function in patients with SCI.