Gait and dementia

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter

28 Scopus citations


Cognitive decline and neurodegenerative disease have been implicated in gait dysfunction via disturbance of top-down control mechanisms. Gait velocity decreases, variability increases, and ability to multitask while walking is impaired as cognition declines. Changes in gait can be used to predict incident mild cognitive impairment states as well as dementia. Slow gait velocity together with a cognitive complaint, the Motoric Cognitive Risk syndrome, can serve as a clinical biomarker for high risk of neurologic decline. While patients with Alzheimer's disease typically have quantitative gait impairment, those with other forms of dementia often manifest more overt, qualitative changes to walking. A variety of interventions may be useful to improve gait, including physical and cognitive rehabilitation, treatment of specific underlying causes of gait problems, and treatment of the dementia itself. Understanding the relationship between gait and dementia can elucidate pathology and improve patient care.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationHandbook of Clinical Neurology
PublisherElsevier B.V.
Number of pages9
StatePublished - 2019

Publication series

NameHandbook of Clinical Neurology
ISSN (Print)0072-9752
ISSN (Electronic)2212-4152


  • Clinical assessment
  • Cognition
  • Dementia
  • Epidemiology
  • Falls
  • Gait
  • Motoric cognitive risk syndrome

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neurology
  • Clinical Neurology


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