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Scientific article
Open access
English

Assessing balance in people with bilateral vestibulopathy using the Mini-Balance Evaluation Systems Test (Mini-BESTest): feasibility and comparison with healthy control data

Published inJournal of neurology, vol. 270, no. 9, p. 4423-4433
Publication date2023-06-03
First online date2023-06-03
Abstract

Objectives: Bilateral vestibulopathy (BVP) leads to unsteadiness when walking, which worsens in darkness or on uneven ground, as well as falls. Since simple balance tests struggle to distinguish between BVP and healthy participants, we aimed (1) to test if the Mini-BESTest is feasible in BVP, (2) how people with BVP perform on the Mini-BESTest and (3) to compare these scores with healthy reference data.

Methods: Fifty participants with BVP completed the Mini-BESTest. 12-month falls incidence was obtained by questionnaire. To compare the overall and sub-scores between our participants with BVP and those of healthy participants from the literature (n = 327; obtained via PubMed searches), Mann-Whitney U tests were used. Sub scores within the BVP group were also compared. Spearman correlations were used to investigate the relationships between Mini-BESTest score and age.

Results: No floor or ceiling effects were observed. Participants with BVP had significantly lower Mini-BESTest total scores than the healthy group. Anticipatory, reactive postural control and sensory orientation sub scores of the Mini-BESTest were significantly lower in BVP, while dynamic gait sub scores were not significantly different. A stronger negative correlation between age and Mini-BESTest total score was found in BVP than in the healthy group. Scores did not differ between patients with different falls history.

Conclusion: The Mini-BESTest is feasible in BVP. Our results confirm the commonly reported balance deficits in BVP. The stronger negative association between age and balance in BVP might reflect the age-related decline in the remaining sensory systems with which people with BVP compensate.

eng
Keywords
  • Balance
  • Bilateral vestibulopathy
  • Mini-Balance Evaluation Systems Test
Citation (ISO format)
ZHU, Meichan et al. Assessing balance in people with bilateral vestibulopathy using the Mini-Balance Evaluation Systems Test (Mini-BESTest): feasibility and comparison with healthy control data. In: Journal of neurology, 2023, vol. 270, n° 9, p. 4423–4433. doi: 10.1007/s00415-023-11795-y
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Article (Published version)
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ISSN of the journal0340-5354
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