Background and Purpose
Multiple sclerosis (MS) is a progressive neurological disorder, characterized by exacerbations and remissions, often resulting in disability affecting multiple neurological functions. The purpose of this article was (1) to describe the frequencies of self-reported symptoms in a natural environment and (2) to determine characteristics and associations between self-reported symptoms and home gait parameters (speed, stride time, and stride length) at baseline and at 3 months in patients with MS.
Participants completed the self-report MS-Related Symptom Scale to measure symptoms. A three-dimensional depth imaging system (Foresite Healthcare) was used to measure gait parameters in the home environment.
These data show significant correlations between the following symptoms: knee locking or collapsing, difficulty sleeping, depression, and anxiety with decreased number of average walks per day; however, the symptoms including trouble-making toilet: day and difficulty in starting urine were positively correlated with average walks per day. The symptom numbness was significantly correlated with decreased speed and decreased stride length.
Discussion and Conclusions
Our findings suggest that certain groups of symptoms were more frequently reported with certain gait parameters (stride time/speed) in persons with MS. Rehabilitation nurses can provide optimal care to prevent future decline in symptoms and gait.