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Energy Cost of Walking in Low Lumbar Myelomeningocele

Moore, Carolyn A. B.Sc.*; Nejad, Bahareh B.A.; Novak, Robert A. M.S.*; Dias, Luciano S. M.D.*

Journal of Pediatric Orthopaedics: May-June 2001 - Volume 21 - Issue 3 - p 388-391
Selected Topics

The aim of this study was to determine whether it is more efficient for adolescents with low lumbar myelomeningocele (MM) to walk with a reciprocal or a swing-through gait pattern. Energy measurements for subjects with MM were compared for reciprocal and swing-through gait and also with an able-bodied control group. The rate of oxygen consumption (in milliliters per kilogram per minute) was higher for both the reciprocal and swing-through conditions compared with the control group, but there was no difference in the rate of consumption between the two modes of walking. Walking velocities (in meters per minute) were slower for both the reciprocal and swing-through conditions compared with the control group, with reciprocal walking significantly slower than swing-through gait. Oxygen cost (in milliliters per kilogram per meter) was higher for both the reciprocal and the swing-through conditions compared with the control group. Oxygen cost was higher for reciprocal walking than for swing-through gait. Swing-through gait proved to be the more efficient walking pattern in this group of subjects with MM.

Study conducted at the Motion Analysis Center, The Children's Memorial Medical Center, Chicago, Illinois, U.S.A.

From the *Motion Analysis Center, The Children's Memorial Medical Center; and †Northwestern University Medical School, Chicago, Illinois, U.S.A.

Address correspondence and reprint requests to Carolyn Moore, 690 Brookstone Road, Grayslake, IL 60030, U.S.A. (e-mail: CarolynMoore@ compuserve.com).

© 2001 Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, Inc.