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Decomposing sensorimotor variability changes in ageing and their connection to falls in older people

Lin, C-H; Faisal, AA; (2018) Decomposing sensorimotor variability changes in ageing and their connection to falls in older people. Scientific Reports , 8 , Article 14546. 10.1038/s41598-018-32648-z. Green open access

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Abstract

The relationship between sensorimotor variability and falls in older people has not been well investigated. We developed a novel task having shared biomechanics of obstacle negotiation to quantify sensorimotor variability related to locomotion across age. We found that sensorimotor variability in foot placement increases continuously with age. We then applied sensory psychophysics to pinpoint the visual and somatosensory systems associated with sensorimotor variability. We showed increased sensory variability, specifically increased proprioceptive variability, the vital cause of more variable foot placement in older people (greater than 65 years). Notably, older participants relied more on the vision to judge their own foot's height compared to the young, suggesting a shift in multisensory integration strategy to compensate for degenerated proprioception. We further modelled the probability of tripping-over based on the relationship between sensorimotor variability and age and found a correspondence between model prediction and community-based data. We reveal increased sensorimotor variability, modulated by sensation precision, a potentially vital mechanism of raised tripping-over and thus fall events in older people. Analysis of sensorimotor variability and its specific components may have the utility of fall risk and rehabilitation target evaluation.

Type: Article
Title: Decomposing sensorimotor variability changes in ageing and their connection to falls in older people
Location: England
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.1038/s41598-018-32648-z
Publisher version: https://doi.org/10.1038/s41598-018-32648-z
Language: English
Additional information: This article is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License, which permits use, sharing, adaptation, distribution and reproduction in any medium or format, as long as you give appropriate credit to the original author(s) and the source, provide a link to the Creative Commons license, and indicate if changes were made. The images or other third party material in this article are included in the article’s Creative Commons license, unless indicated otherwise in a credit line to the material. If material is not included in the article’s Creative Commons license and your intended use is not permitted by statutory regulation or exceeds the permitted use, you will need to obtain permission directly from the copyright holder. To view a copy of this license, visit http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/.
UCL classification: UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Brain Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Brain Sciences > UCL Queen Square Institute of Neurology
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Brain Sciences > UCL Queen Square Institute of Neurology > Imaging Neuroscience
URI: http://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/10058138
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