The effect of rolling walker use on interpretation of Timed Up and Go test scores: a preliminary study

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Studies have shown that the type of assistive device used during the Timed Up and Go test impacts the time it takes to complete the test. This study examines the impact of the use of a rolling walker within individuals on Timed Up and Go scores and assessment of fall risk. The Berg Balance Scale, Timed Up and Go, and linear gait speed were used to measure balance and fall risk on 13 older adults as part of their usual reassessment in preparation for discharge. Timed Up and Go and gait speed scores were compared assistive device conditions. The Berg Balance Scale was used as a benchmark fall risk assessment. Linear gait speed was similar in both conditions. Timed Up and Go times were slower for all patients using a rolling walker versus a cane or no assistive device. Consideration for the effect of assistive device use on Timed Up and Go scores has important implications as it may influence interpretation of fall risk.

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