Single lower-back wearable inertial sensor used
A reliable methodology for step identification in HSP has been validated, augmenting the gait information that can be accurately and objectively extracted from people with HSP during their clinical assessment.
Hereditary spastic paraplegia (HSP) is characterised by progressive lower-limb spasticity and weakness resulting in ambulation difficulties. During clinical practice, walking is observed and/or assessed by timed 10-metre walk tests; time, feasibility, and methodological reliability are barriers to detailed characterisation of patients’ walking abilities when instrumenting this test. Wearable sensors have the potential to overcome such drawbacks once a validated approach is available for patients with HSP.
Therefore, while limiting patients’ and assessors’ burdens, this study aims to validate the adoption of a single lower-back wearable inertial sensor approach for step detection in HSP patients; this is the first essential algorithmic step in quantifying most gait temporal metrics. After filtering the 3D acceleration signal based on its smoothness and enhancing the step-related peaks, initial contacts (ICs) were identified as positive zero-crossings of the processed signal. The proposed approach was validated on thirteen individuals with HSP while they performed three 10-metre tests and wore pressure insoles used as a gold standard.
Overall, the single-sensor approach detected 794 ICs (87% correctly identified) with high accuracy (median absolute errors (mae): 0.05 s) and excellent reliability (ICC = 1.00). Although about 12% of the ICs were missed and the use of walking aids introduced extra ICs, a minor impact was observed on the step time quantifications (mae 0.03 s (5.1%), ICC = 0.89); the use of walking aids caused no significant differences in the average step time quantifications.
Therefore, the proposed single-sensor approach provides a reliable methodology for step identification in HSP, augmenting the gait information that can be accurately and objectively extracted from patients with HSP during their clinical assessment.
SOURCE: Sensors (Basel). 2023 Jul 20;23(14):6563.
doi: 10.3390/s23146563. PMID: 37514857
A Single-Sensor Approach to Quantify Gait in Patients with Hereditary Spastic Paraplegia
1. Department of Mechanical Engineering, INSIGNEO Institute for In Silico Medicine, The University of Sheffield, Sheffield S10 2TN, UK.
2. Academic Department of Neurosciences, Sheffield Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust, University of Sheffield, Sheffield S10 2TN, UK.
3. Department of Biomedical Sciences, University of Sassari, 07100 Sassari, Italy.
4. The Sheffield Institute for Translational Neuroscience (SITraN), University of Sheffield, Sheffield S10 2TN, UK.