Improving Regions of Deviation Gait Symmetry Analysis With Pointwise t Tests

in Journal of Applied Biomechanics
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The regions of deviation method has been proposed as a technique for identifying regions of the gait cycle where joint motion deviates from normal (Shorter et al., 2008). The original statistical analysis distinguished only peak values during stance and swing. In the current article, we extend the approach by examining deviations from normal throughout the entire gait cycle using pointwise t tests. These methods were demonstrated on hind-limb joint angles of 21 Labrador Retrievers without and with cranial cruciate ligament disease. Results were compared with peak difference analysis previously performed on these subjects. All points in the gait cycle where symmetry deviations were significantly affected by cranial cruciate ligament disease (via pointwise t tests) were defined as regions of deviation from symmetry. Discriminant function analysis was used to consider single subjects and validate that these regions were truly areas of difference between groups. Regions of deviation encompassed previously determined significant peak differences, while extending analysis to additional areas of asymmetry. Discriminant function analysis suggested that the region of deviation method is a viable approach for distinguishing motion pattern differences. This enhanced method may help researchers better understand the mechanisms behind lameness and compensation.

Louis A. DiBerardino III is with the Department of Mechanical Science & Engineering, College of Engineering, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, Urbana, IL. Chantal A. Ragetly is with the Department of Small Animal Surgery, College of Veterinary Medicine, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, Urbana, IL, and is now also with Clinique Vétérinaire Evolia, L’Isle Adam, France. Sungjin Hong is with the Department of Psychology, College of Liberal Arts & Sciences, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, Urbana, IL. Dominique J. Griffon is with the Department of Small Animal Surgery, College of Veterinary Medicine, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, Urbana, IL, and with the College of Veterinary Medicine, Western University of Health Sciences, Pomona, CA. Elizabeth T. Hsiao-Wecksler (Corresponding Author) is with Department of Mechanical Science & Engineering, College of Engineering University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, Urbana, IL.