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Year : 2018  |  Volume : 50  |  Issue : 4  |  Page : 134-138

Dual task training, fall, and functional independence in patients with Parkinson's disease: A longitudinal study

1 In-Sync Center for Child Development, Hyderabad, Telangana, India
2 Director, Paravartan Occupational Therapy and Physiotherapy Center, Bangalore, Karnataka, India
3 Department of Rehabilitation Medicine, Ang Mo Kio- Thye Hua Kwan Hospital Ltd, Singapore

Correspondence Address:
Dr. Soumyakanta Sahu
EB-821, Badagada Brit Colony, Bhubaneswar - 751 018, Odisha
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/ijoth.IJOTH_13_18

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Background: Most of the daily living activities (ADL) require dual-task (DT) performance so as to efficiently accomplish different tasks in everyday life like shifting objects from one place to other, monitoring the environment, and judging the threats and balancing efficiently to transfer self, etc. Due to disruption of the motor function of basal ganglia, patients with Parkinson's disease (PD) demonstrate noticeable problems while performing DT with a significant amount of gait and balance impairments which are also known as fall risk factors. Objectives: In this study, we evaluated the long-term effect of a DT training program applied with basic principles of motor learning on falling and ADL in patients with PD. Study Design: Pre-test and post-test experimental study design. Methods: Fifty-four patients with PD were allocated into two groups by simple randomization. Outcomes were recorded for fear of fall (FOF) by Tinetti Fall Efficacy Scale, ADL by functional independence measure and a number of falls within the last 6 months. Both the groups received occupational therapy services, whereas the patients of the experimental group received a 4 weeks program of one-on-one training program including walking while performing several motor and cognitive tasks. Data for all outcomes were measured before training and posttraining. Follow-up scores were recorded till 2 years after completion of the training program. Results: Both the groups showed significant improvements in FOF and ADL scores. Between the group, analyses showed experimental group had a significant difference in the improvements than the control group. There was a significant difference noted between posttraining and follow-up scores for both the groups. The number of falls in both groups reduced significantly. The experimental group showed a significant reduction in some falls as compared to the control group. Conclusion: The result of this study showed feasibility as well as the efficacy of DT training program to minimize falls and FOF thus resulting in improvement of functional independence with its strong retention effect till 2 years after posttraining.

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