Functional assessment of lower extremities in hereditary spastic paraplegia

Arch Phys Med Rehabil. 2009 Nov;90(11):1887-90. doi: 10.1016/j.apmr.2009.06.016.


Objectives: To characterize the spasticity and range of motion (ROM) in patients with hereditary spastic paraplegia (HSP) and to correlate these parameters with walking speed.

Design: An observational population-based cohort study.

Setting: Patient data were acquired from a population-based epidemiologic study performed earlier in Estonia.

Participants: Persons (N=46) (mean age, 50.1y) with clinically confirmed HSP diagnosis (mean duration, 20.9y) participated in the study.

Interventions: Active and passive ROMs were measured with a plastic 360 degrees goniometer. Spasticity was evaluated by using the modified Ashworth scale (MAS). The time it took a patient to walk 10m was recorded.

Main outcome measures: Measurements included testing of active and passive ROM as a marker for mobility, the MAS for spasticity, and time to complete a 10-m walk.

Results: A higher degree of spasticity in hip muscles was associated with lower values of active ROM and slower walking. Walking speed was negatively correlated to disease duration and participant age.

Conclusions: The present study provides analysis of the contributions of spasticity and ROM to walking speed in HSP, both factors negatively influence gait in persons with HSP.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Child
  • Cohort Studies
  • Disability Evaluation
  • Female
  • Gait Disorders, Neurologic / physiopathology*
  • Humans
  • Lower Extremity / physiopathology*
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Range of Motion, Articular
  • Spastic Paraplegia, Hereditary / physiopathology*
  • Statistics, Nonparametric