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Physical activity and walking speed after stroke compared to control values

Conference paper
Authors Anna Danielsson
Christiane Carvalho
Carin Willén
Katharina S Sunnerhagen
Published in Neurorehabilitation and neural repair
Volume 26
Issue 6
Pages 695-804
ISSN 1545-9683
Publication year 2012
Published at Institute of Neuroscience and Physiology, Department of Audiology, Logopedics, Occupational Therapy & Physiotherapy
Institute of Neuroscience and Physiology, Department of Clinical Neuroscience and Rehabilitation
Pages 695-804
Language en
Keywords stroke, physical activity, walking
Subject categories Neurology, Public Health, Global Health, Social Medicine and Epidemiology, Physiotherapy


Background and Aims: Persons with stroke are often less physically active than healthy and it can be hypothesized that activity increases over time and that walking speed is important. The aim was to describe the physical activity level using a questionnaire, compare with normative data and examine relationships between physical activity level, time since stroke and walking speed. Methods: A convenience sample of 70 persons (48 men, 22 woman) with a mean age of 60 (SD 6.8) was examined at a mean of 6 (SD 3) years after first event of stroke. A population based sample of 141 persons (70 men, 71 women) between 40 and 79 years of age from the same geographical area, divided into four cohorts, served as controls. The Physical Activity Scale for the Elderly (PASE) (1) was used to estimate the self-reported physical activity level. The self-selected walking speed was measured on a 30 m track and in stroke persons motor function in the affected leg was assessed according to Fugl-Meyer (maximum score 34). Results: The mean PASE score in the stroke group was 119 (SD 74), corresponding to 72% (SD 31) of the control score. There was no correlation between PASE and time since stroke. The median Fugl-Meyer score was 29 (range 11-34). The mean self-selected walking speed in the stroke group was 1.01 (SD 0.42) m/s which corresponded to 73% of the controls’. In a regression model, the self-selected walking speed could explain the variation in the PASE to 24% (p 􀀟 0.001) and 6% (p 0.002), in the stroke and control groups, respectively. Conclusions: Persons with stroke reported lower physical activity than controls several years after stroke. Self-selected walking speed could partially explain physical activity level in persons with stroke but not in controls.

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