Gait abnormalities in hemiplegia: Their correction by ankle-foot orthoses

J. F. Lehmann, S. M. Condon, R. Price, B. J. DeLateur

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Hemiparetic gait is characterized by slow speed and poorly coordinated movements. Because the values of gait parameters vary with changes in speed, the slow speed that is typical of hemiparetic gait necessitates applying controls for the influence of speed when comparing hemiparetic and able-bodied persons. Gait kinetics and kinematics were measured in seven hemiparetic and seven able-bodied adults to compare their gait patterns at similar speeds and to assess the effectiveness of ankle-foot orthoses which were double-stopped in 5°C of dorsiflexion or 5°of plantarflexion. Hemiparetic persons ambulating without the orthoses had a shorter step length, longer duration stance, and shorter duration swing than normal. They displayed greater than normal flexion of the affected hip during midstance, which, by putting the center of mass farther in fromt of the knee, may explain the increased knee extension moment due to vertical force. Affected hip adduction during single support was less in hemiparetic persons than in able-bodied persons, indicating a decreased lateral shift to the paretic side. During the swing phase, the affected limbs of hemiparetic persons were in less knee flexion and less dorsiflexion than normal, necessitating circumduction to achieve toe clearance. Ankle-foot orthoses increased walking speed to normalize heelstrike duration through use of an optimally adjusted plantarflexion stop. An improperly adjusted orthosis may produce an exaggerated knee flexion momnmt resulting in knee instability.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)763-771
Number of pages9
JournalArchives of physical medicine and rehabilitation
Volume68
Issue number11
StatePublished - Dec 1 1987
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physical Therapy, Sports Therapy and Rehabilitation
  • Rehabilitation

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