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Medicina (Kaunas). 2019 Dec 4;55(12). pii: E773. doi: 10.3390/medicina55120773.

Functional Mobility and Basic Motor Skills in Patients with Multiple Sclerosis and Its Relation to the Anthropometrical Status and Body Composition Parameters.

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School of Health Science in Katowice, Department of Rehabilitation, Medical University of Silesia, 40-055 Katowice, Poland.
Upper-Silesian Medical Centre, Department of the Therapeutic Rehabilitation, 40-635 Katowice, Poland.


Background and objectives: Patients with multiple sclerosis (MS) have many potential risk factors (spasticity, immobilization, glucocorticoids use) which can deteriorate the anthropometrical status and body composition and may have a potential negative impact on functional mobility and basic motor skill improvement after physiotherapy. The aim of the study was to assess the functional mobility and basic motor skills in patients with MS and to correlate them with disability and anthropometrical status and body composition parameters. Materials and Methods: Timed Up-and-Go Test (TUG) and six-min walk test (6MWT) were performed in 36 patients with MS before and after 4 weeks of physiotherapy. Body mass index (BMI), waist-to-height ratio (W/HtR), and waist-to-hip ratio (WHR) were assessed in this group. Body composition was evaluated by bioelectrical impedance analysis (BIA) and fat mass (FAT), fat free mass (FFM), total body water (TBW), and predicted muscle mass (PMM) were expressed as percentage of body mass. Clinical status was assessed by Expanded Disability Status Scale (EDSS) and Ambulatory Index (AI) scales. Results: After physiotherapy, there was a significant improvement in functional mobility and basic motor skills assessed by total distance in 6MWT (p < 0.001) and in TUG trials (p < 0.001). Positive significant correlations were found between the results obtained in both tests (either before and after physiotherapy) vs. FFM, TBW, and PMM, whilst worse results in functional mobility and basic motor skills correlated significantly with higher WHtR, WHR, and FAT (p < 0.05). Clinical status (EDSS) was significantly related to the WHtR and body composition parameters with the same manner as the results in the either 6MWT and TUG. However, there were no significant relationships between BMI vs. either clinical status (EDSS, AI) or functional mobility tests results in patients with MS. Conclusions: Functional mobility and basic motor skills may be significantly improved during physiotherapy, but they are related to the anthropometrical status and body composition of MS patients. Moreover, disability status is also significantly related to these parameters. Body composition deterioration seems to be the important target for the therapeutic intervention in MS patients. For proper nutritional status assessment in patients with MS, body composition analysis or WHtR instead BMI should to be used.


body composition; functional mobility; multiple sclerosis; physical fitness; physiotherapy

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