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An Exploration of Falls and Dual Tasking

A Prospective Cohort Study of People With Multiple Sclerosis

Quinn, Gillian BSc (Physiotherapy); Comber, Laura BSc (Physiotherapy); O' Malley, Nicola BSc (Physiotherapy); McGuigan, Chris MD; Galvin, Rose PhD; Coote, Susan PhD

doi: 10.1097/TGR.0000000000000234
Aging With a Progressive Neurologic Disease
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Objective: To explore the relationship between dual-task cost and falls in people with multiple sclerosis.

Methods: One hundred participants completed a falls screening questionnaire, Timed Up and Go (TUG), and TUG-Cognitive (TUG-C) at baseline. Dual-task cost was the percentage change in performance between TUG and TUG-C. Falls were recorded prospectively for 3 months.

Results: Dual-task cost was not associated with increased risk of falls (P = .90, odds ratio = 1.00). Answering yes to a question about problems doing 2 things at once increased likelihood of falls (risk ratio = 2.07).

Conclusion: A single question asking about dual tasking may be a useful screen for falls risk assessment.

School of Allied Health, University of Limerick, Limerick, Ireland (Mss Quinn, Comber, and O' Malley); Physiotherapy Department (Ms Quinn), St Vincent's University Hospital, Dublin, Ireland (Dr McGuigan); and School of Allied Health & Health Research Institute University of Limerick, Limerick, Ireland (Drs Galvin and Coote).

Correspondence: Gillian Quinn, BSc (Physiotherapy), School of Allied Health, University of Limerick, Limerick, V94 T9PX, Ireland (Gillian.Quinn@ul.ie).

Both Gillian Quinn and Laura Comber are in receipt of funding from the Multiple Sclerosis Society of Ireland, MS Ireland. None of the other authors have any conflict of interest to declare.

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