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Möhwald, Ken; Wuehr, Max; Decker, Julian; Asch, Eric-Manuel; Schenkel, Fabian; Illigens, Ben; Schniepp, Roman (2022): Quantification of pathological gait parameter thresholds of idiopathic normal pressure hydrocephalus patients in clinical gait analysis. Scientific Reports, 12 (1). ISSN 2045-2322

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The aim of the study was to distinguish the hypokinetic gait disorder in idiopathic normal pressure hydrocephalus (NPH) patients from the gait decline in the elderly population by quantifying pathological gait parameter thresholds utilizing a multiple condition gait assessment. 55 NPH patients and 55 age-matched healthy subjects underwent a standardized gait assessment with eight gait conditions. Spatiotemporal gait parameters were assessed through a pressure-sensitive carpet. Statistical analysis consisted of a binary logistic regression (BLR) model, logistic curve-fit evaluated by a Chi-square goodness-of-fit-test, receiver operating characteristic models with area under the curves (AUC), and inverse BLR. Most discriminative gait parameter thresholds were observed in pace, gait cycle, and support gait domains. The most distinct gait conditions were preferred walking speed and semantic dual task. During preferred walking speed, the most significant gait parameter thresholds were stride length ≤ 1.02 m (sensitivity 0.93/specificity 0.91/AUC 0.96), gait velocity ≤ 0.83 m/s (0.80/0.91/0.93), double support phase ≥ 27.0% (0.96/0.76/0.91), and stride length coefficient of variation ≥ 3.4% (0.93/0.72/0.90). In conclusion, the hypokinetic gait disorder in NPH can be quantitatively differentiated from gait patterns of the elderly population. In future studies, this approach may be useful to differentiate clinical entities with similar gait disorders utilizing instrumented gait analysis procedures.

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