Objective: To evaluate a modified extended Timed Up and Go (extended-TUG) assessment against a panel of validated clinical assessments, as an indicator of Parkinson’s disease (PD) severity and cognitive impairment.

Methods: Eighty-seven participants with idiopathic PD were sequentially recruited from a Movement Disorders Clinic. An extended-TUG assessment was employed which required participants to stand from a seated position, walk in a straight line for 7 metres, turn 180 degrees and then return to the start, in a seated position. The extended-TUG assessment duration was correlated to a panel of clinical assessments, including the Unified Parkinson’s Disease Rating Scale (MDS-UPDRS), Quality of Life (PDQ-39), Scales for Outcomes in Parkinson’s disease (SCOPA-Cog), revised Addenbrooke’s Cognitive Index (ACE-R) and Barratt’s Impulsivity Scale 11 (BIS-11).

Results: Extended-TUG time was significantly correlated to MDS-UPDRS III score and to SCOPA-Cog, ACE-R (p<0.001) and PDQ-39 scores (p<0.01). Generalized linear models determined the extended-TUG to be a sole variable in predicting ACE-R or SCOPA-Cog scores. Patients in the fastest extended-TUG tertile were predicted to perform 8.3 and 13.4 points better in the SCOPA-Cog and ACE-R assessments, respectively, than the slowest group. Patients who exceeded the dementia cut-off scores with these instruments exhibited significantly longer extended-TUG times.

Conclusions: Extended-TUG performance appears to be a useful indicator of cognition as well as motor function and quality of life in PD, and warrants further evaluation as a first line assessment tool to monitor disease severity and response to treatment. Poor extended-TUG performance may identify patients without overt cognitive impairment form whom cognitive assessment is needed.


Parkinson’s disease, Cognitive state, Timed Up and Go, SCOPA

Available for download on Sunday, April 15, 2018