Abstract

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.

Keywords

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

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