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Auris Nasus Larynx. 2011 Aug;38(4):462-8. doi: 10.1016/j.anl.2011.01.016. Epub 2011 Mar 2.

Gait instability caused by vestibular disorders - analysis by tactile sensor.

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Department of Otorhinolaryngology and Head & Neck Surgery, Akita University School of Medicine, Japan.



To elucidate instability of gait performance in patients with vestibular lesions by the use of a tactile sensors placed under both feet.


Gait analysis was conducted by the use of tactile sensors in 92 patients who had various types of vestibular lesions including vestibular neuritis (VN), acoustic neuroma (AN), and spinocerebellar degeneration (SCD). 26 healthy adults served as a control. Variables were coefficient of variation of stance, swing, and double support durations. Morphological analysis of foot pressure progression during stance was also performed. In addition, differences in each foot's integrated foot pressure in a gait test were measured, especially in cases with unilateral vestibular lesions. All data was comparatively analyzed between each pathological group and control group. A comparative study between intact side foot and lesion side foot was performed in those unilateral vestibular disorder cases as well.


Those gait phase related variables were significantly greater in the pathologic group than in the control group, especially under gait with eyes closed. Morphological irregularity of foot pressure progression during stance was shown in cases with VN and SCD and was greatest in SCD cases. As for integrated foot pressure, in most cases with VN, it has become greater in the lesion side foot, suggesting that body center of gravity could shift toward the lesion side during gait.


Gait analysis by the use of tactile sensors could provide additional important information regarding vestibular patho-physiology in patients with vestibular system disorders. Accordingly, gait performance tests should also be taken into consideration as a vestibular function test for patients with vertigo.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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