Understanding the Physiological Significance of Four Inertial Gait Features in Multiple Sclerosis.
Gait impairment in multiple sclerosis (MS) can result from muscle weakness, physical fatigue, lack of coordination, and other symptoms. Walking speed, as measured by a number of clinician-administered walking tests, is the primary measure of gait impairment used by clinical researchers, but inertial gait features from body-worn sensors have been proven to add clinical value. This paper seeks to understand and differentiate the physiological significance of four such features with proven value in MS to facilitate adoption by clinical researchers and incorporation in gait monitoring and analysis systems. In addition, this information can be used to select features that might be appropriate in other forms of disability. Two of the four features are computed using the dynamic time warping (DTW) algorithm: The "DTW Score" is based on the usual DTW distance, and the "Warp Score" is based on the warping length. The third feature, based on kernel density estimation (KDE), is the "KDE Peak" value. Finally, the "Causality Index" is based on the phase slope index between inertial signals from different body parts. Relationships between these measures and the aforementioned gait-related symptoms are determined by applying factor analysis to three common, clinical walking outcomes, then correlating the inertial measures as well as walking speed to each extracted factor. Statistically significant differences in correlation coefficients to the three extracted clinical factors support their distinct physiological meaning and suggest they may have complimentary roles in the analysis of MS-related walking disability.
Dandu, SR; Engelhard, MM; Qureshi, A; Gong, J; Lach, JC; Brandt-Pearce, M; Goldman, MD
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