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Journal Article


Figueiredo AI, Balbinot G, Brauner FO, Schiavo A, de Souza Urbanetto M, Mestriner RG. Exp. Gerontol. 2022; ePub(ePub): ePub.


(Copyright © 2022, Elsevier Publishing)






BACKGROUND: Mobility smoothness assessed by the spectral arc length (SPARC) may reflect the complex biomechanical alterations that occur with aging and may help detect functional mobility changes after experiencing falls. Here, we sought to explore whether smoothness of angular velocities of the trunk measured using SPARC metrics in the instrumented timed-up-and-go (iTUG) test are assoacited with a history of falls in the oldest-old.

METHODS: A case-control study. The sample consisted of 64 community-dwelling oldest-old individuals who underwent the following assessments: clinical and sociodemographic questionnaire, Mini Mental State Examination (MMSE), Falls Efficacy-questionnaire International (FESI), the Activities-specific Balance Confidence (ABC), Functional Reaching Test (FRT), and the iTUG test. We used an inertial measurement unit (IMU) to obtain trunk angular velocities from the IMU's gyroscope, which was used to calculate mobility smoothness (SPARC).

RESULTS: Standard deviation of the mobility smoothness around the anteroposterior axis of rotation (SPARC roll SD) (OR: 6.15 / CI 95 % = 1.58-23.94) and duration (OR: 1.11 / CI 95 % = 1.09-1.22) in the full iTUG test were associated with a history of falls in oldest-old. Using solely the full iTUG duration (59.19 ± 2.18) or SPARC (61.87 ± 2.40) resulted in lower probability to detect a history of falls in comparison with the combined measurement (66.21 ± 2.50).

CONCLUSION: SPARC roll SD in the full iTUG may be a relevant biomarker to detect mobility smoothness changes in the oldest-old. This study provides evidence the oldest-old with a history of falls may change their functional mobility, in terms of movement duration and smoothness.

Language: en


Falls; Gait; Mobility smoothness; Motor control


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