Time-to-contact and multiscale entropy identify differences in postural control in adolescent idiopathic scoliosis

Gait Posture. 2011 May;34(1):13-8. doi: 10.1016/j.gaitpost.2011.02.015. Epub 2011 Apr 7.


Previous reports on changes in postural control in adolescent idiopathic scoliosis (AIS) compared to healthy controls have been inconsistent. This may suggest center of pressure (COP) sway parameters are not sufficient for determining the ability to maintain quiet upright stance indicating more complex measures may be needed to examine postural control in AIS. The purpose of this investigation was to compare postural control between AIS of different severity levels and healthy controls using time-to-contact (TtC), the complexity index of multiscale entropy (C(r)), and COP sway parameters. Thirty-six AIS patients were classified as pre-bracing or pre-operative and compared to 10 healthy control subjects. Overall, the AIS patients showed significantly greater COP sway in mediolateral direction, but deficits with respect to the anteroposterior direction were only systematically identified with the time-to-contact and entropy measures. The multiscale entropy (C(r)) results indicate that those with AIS utilize a different control strategy from healthy controls in the mediolateral direction that is more constrained, less complex and less adaptable. AIS severity further reduced this adaptability in the anteroposterior direction. These results indicate it is necessary to examine both planes of motion when investigating postural control in AIS. Additionally, the application of the measures used to assess the nature of the postural control changes in AIS should also be considered.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Analysis of Variance
  • Biomechanical Phenomena
  • Case-Control Studies
  • Child
  • Entropy
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Postural Balance / physiology*
  • Pressure
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Scoliosis / physiopathology*
  • Severity of Illness Index