Observational Gait Assessments in People With Neurological Disorders: A Systematic Review

Published:August 05, 2015DOI:



      To analyze the clinical and psychometric properties of observational gait assessment scales in people with neurological disorders.

      Data Sources

      The databases used for the literature search were MEDLINE, the Cochrane Central Register of Controlled Trial, Web of Science, and the Cumulative Index to Nursing and Allied Health. The search was conducted between September 15 and November 30, 2014.

      Study Selection

      Studies that investigate and validate observational gait assessment scales in people with central nervous system disorders.

      Data Extraction

      General characteristics of the studies, including number of patients and observational gait assessment scales analyzed and their psychometric properties, were extracted.

      Data Synthesis

      After the literature search, 15 articles were included in this review. Seven of the 15 articles studied the Tinetti Gait Scale (TGS), 2 studied the Rivermead Visual Gait Assessment (RVGA), 1 studied the Gait Assessment and Intervention Tool (G.A.I.T.), 3 studied the Wisconsin Gait Scale, and one of them compared the TGS and the G.A.I.T.


      The scale that appears to be the most suitable for both clinical practice and research is the G.A.I.T. because it has shown to be valid, reliable, and sensitive to change, homogeneous, and comprehensive, containing a large number of items that assess most components of the gait pattern. The RVGA was studied in those with diverse neurological disorders, including multiple sclerosis. For those with Parkinson disease, the TGS showed sensitivity and the Tinetti Performance-Oriented Mobility Assessment (POMA) showed predictive capability for falls and mortality as well as intra- and interrater reliability. The Tinetti POMA was also studied in those with normal pressure hydrocephalus, showing sensitivity and in those with Huntington disease, showing reliability and validity. More research is needed to more comprehensively analyze the psychometric properties of the RVGA, Wisconsin Gait Scale, TGS, and G.A.I.T. in patients with diverse neurological disorders, other than stroke.


      List of abbreviations:

      G.A.I.T. (Gait Assessment and Intervention Tool), HGAF (Hemiplegic Gait Analysis Form), ICC (intraclass correlation coefficient), POMA (Performance-Oriented Mobility Assessment), RVGA (Rivermead Visual Gait Assessment), TGS (Tinetti Gait Scale), UPDRS (Unified Parkinson's Disease Rating Scale), WGS (Wisconsin Gait Scale)
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