Relationships between isometric muscle strength, gait parameters, and gross motor function measure in patients with cerebral palsy

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Purpose: This study investigated the correlation between isometric muscle strength, gross motor function, and gait parameters in patients with spastic cerebral palsy and to find which muscle groups play an important role for gait pattern in a flexed knee gait. Materials and Methods: Twenty-four ambulatory patients (mean age, 10.0 years) with spastic cerebral palsy who were scheduled for single event multilevel surgery, including distal hamstring lengthening, were included. Preoperatively, peak isometric muscle strength was measured for the hip flexor, hip extensor, knee flexor, and knee extensor muscle groups using a handheld dynamometer, and three-dimensional (3D) gait analysis and gross motor function measure (GMFM) scoring were also performed. Correlations between peak isometric strength and GMFM, gait kinematics, and gait kinetics were analyzed. Results: Peak isometric muscle strength of all muscle groups was not related to the GMFM score and the gross motor function classification system level. Peak isometric strength of the hip extensor and knee extensor was significantly correlated with the mean pelvic tilt (r=-0.588, p=0.003 and r=-0.436, p=0.033) and maximum pelvic obliquity (r=-0.450, p=0.031 and r=-0.419, p=0.041). There were significant correlations between peak isometric strength of the knee extensor and peak knee extensor moment in early stance (r=0.467, p=0.021) and in terminal stance (r=0.416, p=0.043). Conclusion: There is no correlation between muscle strength and gross motor function. However, this study showed that muscle strength, especially of the extensor muscle group of the hip and knee joints, might play a critical role in gait by stabilizing pelvic motion and decreasing energy consumption in a flexed knee gait.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)217-224
Number of pages8
JournalYonsei Medical Journal
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 2016


  • Cerebral palsy
  • Gait parameter
  • Gross motor function
  • Muscle strength

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