|Other names||Abnormalities of gait|
|Quadrupedalism in a Kurdish family|
Gait abnormality is a deviation from normal walking (gait). Watching a patient walk is the most important part of the neurological examination. Normal gait requires that many systems, including strength, sensation and coordination, function in an integrated fashion. Many common problems in the nervous system and musculoskeletal system will show up in the way a person walks.
Patients with musculoskeletal pain, weakness or limited range of motion often present conditions such as Trendelenburg's sign, limping, myopathic gait and antalgic gait.
Patients suffering from peripheral neuropathy also experience numbness and tingling in their hands and feet. This can cause ambulation impairment, such as trouble climbing stairs or maintaining balance. Gait abnormality is also common in persons with nervous system problems such as cauda equina syndrome, multiple sclerosis, Parkinson's disease, Alzheimer's disease, myasthenia gravis, normal pressure hydrocephalus, and Charcot–Marie–Tooth disease. Research has shown that neurological gait abnormalities are associated with an increased risk of falls in older adults.
Orthopedic corrective treatments may also manifest into gait abnormality, such as lower extremity amputation, post-fracture, and arthroplasty (joint replacement). Difficulty in ambulation that results from chemotherapy is generally temporary in nature, though recovery times of six months to a year are common. Likewise, difficulty in walking due to arthritis or joint pains (antalgic gait) sometimes resolves spontaneously once the pain is gone.Hemiplegic persons have circumduction gait, where the affected limb moves through an arc away from the body, and those with cerebral palsy often have scissoring gait.
Neurology is a branch of medicine dealing with disorders of the nervous system. Neurology deals with the diagnosis and treatment of all categories of conditions and disease involving the central and peripheral nervous systems, including their coverings, blood vessels, and all effector tissue, such as muscle. Neurological practice relies heavily on the field of neuroscience, the scientific study of the nervous system.
Mucopolysaccharidoses are a group of metabolic disorders caused by the absence or malfunctioning of lysosomal enzymes needed to break down molecules called glycosaminoglycans (GAGs). These long chains of sugar carbohydrates occur within the cells that help build bone, cartilage, tendons, corneas, skin and connective tissue. GAGs are also found in the fluids that lubricate joints.
Hypotonia, commonly known as floppy baby syndrome, is a state of low muscle tone, often involving reduced muscle strength. Hypotonia is not a specific medical disorder, but a potential manifestation of many different diseases and disorders that affect motor nerve control by the brain or muscle strength. Hypotonia is a lack of resistance to passive movement, whereas muscle weakness results in impaired active movement. Central hypotonia originates from the central nervous system, while peripheral hypotonia is related to problems within the spinal cord, peripheral nerves and/or skeletal muscles. Recognizing hypotonia, even in early infancy, is usually relatively straightforward, but diagnosing the underlying cause can be difficult and often unsuccessful. The long-term effects of hypotonia on a child's development and later life depend primarily on the severity of the muscle weakness and the nature of the cause. Some disorders have a specific treatment but the principal treatment for most hypotonia of idiopathic or neurologic cause is physical therapy, occupational therapy for remediation, and/or music therapy.
Normal-pressure hydrocephalus (NPH), also called communicating hydrocephalus and malresorptive hydrocephalus, is a condition in which excess cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) occurs in the ventricles, and with normal or slightly elevated cerebrospinal fluid pressure. As the fluid builds up, it causes the ventricles to enlarge and the pressure inside the head to increase, compressing surrounding brain tissue and leading to neurological complications. The disease presents in a classic triad of symptoms, which are urinary incontinence, dementia, and gait deviations. The disease was first described by Hakim and Adams in 1965.
A limp is a type of asymmetric abnormality of the gait. Limping may be caused by pain, weakness, neuromuscular imbalance, or a skeletal deformity. The most common underlying cause of a painful limp is physical trauma; however, in the absence of trauma, other serious causes, such as septic arthritis or slipped capital femoral epiphysis, may be present. The diagnostic approach involves ruling out potentially serious causes via the use of X-rays, blood tests, and sometimes joint aspiration. Initial treatment involves pain management. A limp is the presenting problem in about 4% of children who visit hospital emergency departments.
Foot drop is a gait abnormality in which the dropping of the forefoot happens due to weakness, irritation or damage to the common fibular nerve including the sciatic nerve, or paralysis of the muscles in the anterior portion of the lower leg. It is usually a symptom of a greater problem, not a disease in itself. Foot drop is characterized by inability or impaired ability to raise the toes or raise the foot from the ankle (dorsiflexion). Foot drop may be temporary or permanent, depending on the extent of muscle weakness or paralysis and it can occur in one or both feet. In walking, the raised leg is slightly bent at the knee to prevent the foot from dragging along the ground.
Astasia-abasia refers to the inability to either stand or walk in a normal manner. Astasia refers to the inability to stand upright unassisted. Abasia refers to lack of motor coordination in walking. The term abasia literally means that the base of gait is inconstant or unmeasurable. When seen in conversion disorder, the gait is bizarre and is not suggestive of a specific organic lesion: often the patient sways wildly and nearly falls, recovering at the last moment.
Fall prevention is a variety of actions to help reduce the number of accidental falls suffered by older people.
The GM1 gangliosidoses are caused by a deficiency of beta-galactosidase, with resulting abnormal storage of acidic lipid materials in cells of the central and peripheral nervous systems, but particularly in the nerve cells.
Guillain–Barré syndrome (GBS) is a rapid-onset muscle weakness caused by the immune system damaging the peripheral nervous system. The initial symptoms are typically changes in sensation or pain along with muscle weakness, beginning in the feet and hands. This often spreads to the arms and upper body, with both sides being involved. The symptoms develop over hours to a few weeks. During the acute phase, the disorder can be life-threatening, with about 15% developing weakness of the breathing muscles requiring mechanical ventilation. Some are affected by changes in the function of the autonomic nervous system, which can lead to dangerous abnormalities in heart rate and blood pressure.
A GALS screen is an examination used by doctors and other healthcare professionals to detect locomotor abnormalities and functional disability relating to gait, arms, legs and the spine.
Central nervous system diseases, also known as central nervous system disorders, are a group of neurological disorders that affect the structure or function of the brain or spinal cord, which collectively form the central nervous system (CNS).
An antalgic gait is a gait that develops as a way to avoid pain while walking. It is a form of gait abnormality where the stance phase of gait is abnormally shortened relative to the swing phase. It is a good indication of weight-bearing pain.
A neurological disorder is any disorder of the nervous system. Structural, biochemical or electrical abnormalities in the brain, spinal cord or other nerves can result in a range of symptoms. Examples of symptoms include paralysis, muscle weakness, poor coordination, loss of sensation, seizures, confusion, pain and altered levels of consciousness. There are many recognized neurological disorders, some relatively common, but many rare. They may be assessed by neurological examination, and studied and treated within the specialities of neurology and clinical neuropsychology.
Signs and symptoms of Parkinson's disease are varied. Parkinson's disease affects movement, producing motor symptoms. Non-motor symptoms, which include dysautonomia, cognitive and neurobehavioral problems, and sensory and sleep difficulties, are also common. When other diseases mimic Parkinson's disease, they are categorized as parkinsonism.
Parkinsonian gait is the type of gait exhibited by patients suffering from Parkinson's disease (PD).. It is often described by people with Parkinson's as feeling like being stuck in place, when initiating a step or turning, and can increase the risk of falling. This disorder is caused by a deficiency of dopamine in the basal ganglia circuit leading to motor deficits. Gait is one of the most affected motor characteristics of this disorder although symptoms of Parkinson's disease are varied.
Spinal stenosis is an abnormal narrowing of the spinal canal or neural foramen that results in pressure on the spinal cord or nerve roots. Symptoms may include pain, numbness, or weakness in the arms or legs. Symptoms are typically gradual in onset and improve with bending forwards. Severe symptoms may include loss of bladder control, loss of bowel control, or sexual dysfunction.
Gait deviations are nominally referred to as any variation of standard human gait, typically manifesting as a coping mechanism in response to an anatomical impairment. Lower-limb amputees are unable to maintain the characteristic walking patterns of an able-bodied individual due to the removal of some portion of the impaired leg. Without the anatomical structure and neuromechanical control of the removed leg segment, amputees must use alternative compensatory strategies to walk efficiently. Prosthetic limbs provide support to the user and more advanced models attempt to mimic the function of the missing anatomy, including biomechanically controlled ankle and knee joints. However, amputees still display quantifiable differences in many measures of ambulation when compared to able-bodied individuals. Several common observations are whole-body movements, slower and wider steps, shorter strides, and increased sway.
Age-related mobility disability is a self-reported inability to walk due to impairments, limited mobility, dexterity or stamina. It has been found mostly in older adults with decreased strength in lower extremities.
A central nervous system tumor is an abnormal growth of cells from the tissues of the brain or spinal cord. CNS tumor is a generic term encompassing over 120 distinct tumor types. Common symptoms of CNS tumors include vomiting, headache, changes in vision, nausea, and seizures. A CNS tumor can be detected and classified via neurological examination, medical imaging, such as x-ray imaging, magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) or computed tomography (CT), or after analysis of a biopsy.