Daily-Living Freezing of Gait as Quantified Using Wearables in People With Parkinson Disease: Comparison With Self-Report and Provocation Tests

Diana Denk, Talia Herman, Demi Zoetewei, Pieter Ginis, Marina Brozgol, Pablo Cornejo Thumm, Eva Decaluwe, Natalie Ganz, Luca Palmerini, Nir Giladi, Alice Nieuwboer, Jeffrey M. Hausdorff*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Objective: Freezing of gait (FOG) is an episodic, debilitating phenomenon that is common among people with Parkinson disease. Multiple approaches have been used to quantify FOG, but the relationships among them have not been well studied. In this cross-sectional study, we evaluated the associations among FOG measured during unsupervised daily-living monitoring, structured in-home FOG-provoking tests, and self-report. Methods: Twenty-eight people with Parkinson disease and FOG were assessed using self-report questionnaires, percentage of time spent frozen (%TF) during supervised FOG-provoking tasks in the home while off and on dopaminergic medication, and %TF evaluated using wearable sensors during 1 week of unsupervised daily-living monitoring. Correlations between those 3 assessment approaches were analyzed to quantify associations. Further, based on the %TF difference between in-home off-medication testing and in-home on-medication testing, the participants were divided into those responding to Parkinson disease medication (responders) and those not responding to Parkinson disease medication (nonresponders) in order to evaluate the differences in the other FOG measures. Results: The %TF during unsupervised daily living was mild to moderately correlated with the %TF during a subset of the tasks of the in-home off-medication testing but not the on-medication testing or self-report. Responders and nonresponders differed in the %TF during the personal "hot spot"task of the provoking protocol while off medication (but not while on medication) but not in the total scores of the self-report questionnaires or the measures of FOG evaluated during unsupervised daily living. Conclusion: The %TF during daily living was moderately related to FOG during certain in-home FOG-provoking tests in the off-medication state. However, this measure of FOG was not associated with self-report or FOG provoked in the on-medication state. These findings suggest that to fully capture FOG severity, it is best to assess FOG using a combination of all 3 approaches. Impact: These findings suggest that several complementary approaches are needed to provide a complete assessment of FOG severity.

Original languageEnglish
Article numberpzac129
JournalPhysical Therapy
Issue number12
StatePublished - 1 Dec 2022


  • Daily-Living Monitoring
  • FOG Assessment
  • FOG Severity
  • Freezing of Gait


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