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Posted by on May 15, 2019 in Parkinson's Disease | 0 comments

In a nutshell

This study investigated if postural perturbations during treadmill training (PPTT) improved gait in patients with Parkinson's disease (PD). Researchers suggested that PPTT improves the movement symptoms of these patients. 

Some background

Parkinson's disease (PD) affects the brain cells causing symptoms such as muscle weakness, impaired balance and abnormal gait (walking). The drugs available to treat these symptoms are only of limited effectiveness. Therefore, physical training therapies are being more used.

PPTT includes walking on the treadmill (non-stop moving belt on which to walk or run) while things being put in your way to disturb the walking. Prior studies showed how this can improve the gait and balance of patients. Even though treadmill training is commonly used, PPTT has never been studied in patients with PD.

Methods & findings

The objective of this study was to investigate the effectiveness of PPTT in treating gait disorders in patients with PD.

This study included 38 patients. Of these, 18 received PPTT and 20 received standard treadmill training. These patients were followed-up for 3 months. Movement disability, postural and gait stability were assessed.

Treadmill training improved the symptoms of both groups of patients. These effects were greater in the PPTT group. The PPTT showed 38% fewer symptoms while the standard group showed 22% fewer symptoms.

In the PPTT group, 50% fewer gait disorder symptoms and 40% fewer postural symptoms were seen. These were compared to 22% fewer gait symptoms and 33% fewer postural symptoms in the standard group. Positive effects lasted after 3 months.

The bottom line

This study concluded that PPTT is associated with improved gait and balance in patients with Parkinson's disease.

The fine print

This study had a limited number of participants. Larger studies are needed for stronger evidence.

Published By :

Journal of Parkinson’s disease

Date :

Apr 03, 2019

Original Title :

Perturbation Treadmill Training Improves Clinical Characteristics of Gait and Balance in Parkinson’s Disease.

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