Using motion of the whole-body center of mass to assess the balance during gait of children with spastic cerebral palsy

Rong-Ju Cherng, Li Shan Chou, Fong-chin Su, William J. Shaughnessy, Kenton R. Kaufman

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Abstract

Clinical gait analysis has been widely used to evaluate the treatment outcome for children with cerebral palsy (CP). However, the outcome indices tend to be limited to individual segments or gait parameters. Little attention has been paid to the overall motion of the whole-body center of mass. The purpose of this study was to determine if the motion of the whole-body center of mass could be used to detect the change of balance in children with CP. The study adopted a mixed retrospective and prospective study. The temporal distance variables of gait and the motion of the whole-body center of mass were compared among children with CP (prior to and after their surgical operation) and non-disabled children. The results showed that children with cerebral palsy walked slower and with shorter stride lengths than the non-disabled children prior to operation, but improved to be no difference after operation. The excursion and the maximum velocity of the center of mass increased postoperatively in the direction of walking, but decreased in the medial-lateral direction. The variation of the velocity also decreased. These changes were all towards the values of the non-disabled children. The results of the study suggest that the motion of the whole-body center of mass can be used to quantify CP patients' surgical outcomes in balance.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)150-155
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Medical and Biological Engineering
Volume27
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 2007 Sep 1

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All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Biomedical Engineering

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