Comparison of Standard Clinical and Instrumented Physical Performance Tests in Discriminating Functional Status of High-Functioning People Aged 61–70 Years Old

Authors:Alice Coni 1, Jeanine M. Van Ancum 2, Ronny Bergquist 3, A. Stefanie Mikolaizak 4, Sabato Mellone 1,5, Lorenzo Chiari 1,5, Andrea B. Maier 2,6and Mirjam Pijnappels 2,


Assessment of physical performance by standard clinical tests such as the 30-s Chair Stand (30CST) and the Timed Up and Go (TUG) may allow early detection of functional decline, even in high-functioning populations, and facilitate preventive interventions. Inertial sensors are emerging to obtain instrumented measures that can provide subtle details regarding the quality of the movement while performing such tests. We compared standard clinical with instrumented measures of physical performance in their ability to distinguish between high and very high functional status, stratified by the Late-Life Function and Disability Instrument (LLFDI). We assessed 160 participants from the PreventIT study (66.3 ± 2.4 years, 87 females, median LLFDI 72.31, range: 44.33–100) performing the 30CST and TUG while a smartphone was attached to their lower back. The number of 30CST repetitions and the stopwatch-based TUG duration were recorded. Instrumented features were computed from the smartphone embedded inertial sensors. Four logistic regression models were fitted and the Areas Under the Receiver Operating Curve (AUC) were calculated and compared using the DeLong test. Standard clinical and instrumented measures of 30CST both showed equal moderate discriminative ability of 0.68 (95%CI 0.60–0.76), p = 0.97. Similarly, for TUG: AUC was 0.68 (95%CI 0.60–0.77) and 0.65 (95%CI 0.56–0.73), respectively, p = 0.26. In conclusion, both clinical and instrumented measures, recorded through a smartphone, can discriminate early functional decline in healthy adults aged 61–70 years. Read the full article here as published in Sensors 2019, 19(3), 449

Keywords: instrumented assessments; smartphone; standard clinical measures; physical function