Effect on Gait Speed, Balance, Motor Symptom Rating, and Quality of Life in Those with Stage I PD Utilizing LSVT BIG®.

Effect on Gait Speed, Balance, Motor Symptom Rating, and Quality of Life in Those with Stage I PD Utilizing LSVT BIG®.

Individuals with Parkinson’s Disease (PD) are often not referred to Physical Therapy (PT) until there are issues with mobility in later Hoehn and Yahr Stages. There have been no studies outlining the benefits of PT intervention in Stage I only. For persons with PD, deficits in motor function increase over time due to destruction of dopamine-producing cells. LSVT BIG, an exercise program for PD, has been shown to be effective in improving mobility. The purpose of this study was to assess participants functional improvement at a level of minimal clinically important difference (MCID) in one of four outcome measures: Gait Speed, Berg Balance Assessment, Functional Gait Assessment, and Unified Parkinson’s Disease Rating Scale Motor Section.

Nine participants with Stage I PD received LSVT BIG 4x/week for 4 weeks followed by bimonthly participation in a community class. Outcome measurement occurred at baseline, after LSVT BIG, and three months after LSVT BIG. Eight of nine participants (88.9%) achieved MCID in at least one of the four measures at both after and 3 months after LSVT BIG training indicating improvement based on our criteria. Participants in Stage I of PD in this study completed LSVT BIG and demonstrated improved function.

Scott BuxtonResearch article posted by: Scott Buxton

My name is Scott and I am currently the editor of physiospot.

Away from the keyboard I am extended scope physiotherapist working in ED and an acute frailty unit specialising in rapid assessment and discharge of acutely unwell frail older people.


  1. Dimitris A. says:

    Is LSVT beneficial for stage 2 or 3 PD?

  2. Scott Buxton Scott Buxton says:

    Hello Dimitris,

    this study only investigated the effects on Stage I H&Y. After a quick read of the evidence I would say it depends on the severity of their motor impairment +/- any cognitive impairment. As I’m sure you are aware each person is affected by their PD in their own way therefore it would be hard to provide a definitive answer. On the whole it seems to have some effect. I would recommend having a search for any literature see if you agree or disagree with the findings. Let me know what you find!


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