• Compensatory Arm Reactions in Individuals with Parkinson’s Disease

      Weaver, Tyler; Applied Health Sciences Program (Brock University, 2013-01-14)
      This study examined how perturbation-evoked compensatory arm reactions in individuals with Parkinson’s disease (PD) are influenced by explicit verbal instruction. Ten individuals with PD and 15 older adults without PD responded to surface translations with or without specific instruction to reach for and grasp the handrail. Electromyographic (EMG) and kinematic recordings were taken from the reaching arm. Results showed that individuals with and without PD benefitted similarly from explicit instruction. Explicit instruction resulted in earlier (p=0.005) and larger (p<0.001) medial deltoid EMG responses in comparison to no specific instructions. Compensatory arm reactions also occurred with a higher peak medio-lateral wrist velocity (p<0.001) and higher peak shoulder abduction angular velocity (p<0.001) with explicit instruction. Explicit instruction positively influenced compensatory arm reactions in individuals with and without PD. Future research is needed to determine whether the benefits of instruction persist over time and translate to a loss of balance in real life.
    • The impact of drug-induced dyskinesias on rapid alternating movements in patients with Parkinson's disease

      Ghassemi, Mehrdad Marco.; Applied Health Sciences Program (Brock University, 2005-06-15)
      We investigated the likelihood that hypokinesia/bradykinesia coexist with druginduced dyskinesias (DID) in patients with Parkinson's disease (PD). The influence of dyskinesias on rapid alternating movements (RAM) was investigated in ten dyskinetic patients (DPD). Their motor performance was compared to that of ten age/gendermatched non-dyskinetic patients (NDPD) and ten healthy control subjects. Whole-body magnitude (WBM) and fast pronation-supination at the wrist were recorded using 6- degrees of freedom magnetic motion tracker and forearm rotational sensors, respectively. Subjects were asked to pronate-supinate their dominant hand for 10s. Pre- and postmeasures were taken in a neutral position for 20s. RANGE (measure of hypokinesia), DURATION (measure of bradykinesia). VELOCITY (measure of bradykinesia) and IRREGULARITY (measure of fluctuations in movement amplitude) were used to assess RAM performance. Results showed that DPD patients had greater WBM than NDPD and control groups during rest and RAM performance. There were no differences in performance between NDPD and DPD groups for RANGE, DURATION and VELOCITY, despite significant longer disease duration for the DPD group (DPD = 15.5 ± 6.2 years versus NDPD = 6.6 ± 2.6 years). However, both the NDPD and DPD groups showed lower RANGE, longer DURATION, and reduced VELOCITY compared to controls,, suggesting the presence of bradykinesia and hypokinesia. In the case of IRREGULARITY, DPD patients showed clear fluctuations in movement amplitude compared to the NDPD and control groups. However, the lack of correlation between WBM and IRREGULARITY within the DPD group (Spearman's rank order, Rho - 0.31, p > 0.05), suggests that DID was not the primary cause of the fluctuating movementamplitude observed in that group. In conclusion, these findings suggest that DID may coexists with bradykinesia and hypokinesia, but that they are not inevitably accompanied with worsening motor performance.