Now showing 1 - 10 of 18
  • Publication
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    Development of a Parkinson’s disease specific falls questionnaire
    (2021)
    Harris, Dale M.
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    Duckham, Rachel L.
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    Daly, Robin M.
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    Abbott, Gavin
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    Johnson, Liam
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    Rantalainen, Timo
    ;
    Background: Falls are a major health burden for older adults with Parkinson's disease (PD), but there is currently no reliable questionnaire to capture the circumstances and consequences of falls in older adults with PD. This study aimed to develop a PD-specific falls questionnaire and to evaluate its test-retest reliability in older adults with PD.

    Methods: A novel PD-specific falls questionnaire (PDF-Q) was developed in two modes (online and paper-based version) and used to assess falls and near-falls events over the past 12-months. Questions were agreed upon by an expert group, with the domains based on previous falls-related questionnaires. The questions included the number and circumstances (activities, location and direction) of falls and near-falls, and consequences (injuries and medical treatment) of falls. The PDF-Q was distributed to 46 older adults with PD (online n = 30, paper n = 16), who completed the questionnaire twice, 4 weeks apart. Kappa (κ) statistics were used to establish test-retest reliability of the questionnaire items.

    Results: Pooled results from both questionnaires for all participants were used to assess the overall test-retest reliability of the questionnaire. Questions assessing the number of falls (κ = 0.41) and the number of near-falls (κ = 0.51) in the previous 12-months demonstrated weak agreement, while questions on the location of falls (κ = 0.89) and near-falls (κ = 1.0) demonstrated strong to almost perfect agreement. Questions on the number of indoor (κ = 0.86) and outdoor (κ = 0.75) falls demonstrated moderate to strong agreement, though questions related to the number of indoor (κ = 0.47) and outdoor (κ = 0.56) near-falls demonstrated weak agreement. Moderate to strong agreement scores were observed for the most recent fall and near-fall in terms of the direction (indoor fall κ = 0.80; outdoor fall κ = 0.81; near-fall κ = 0.54), activity (indoor fall κ = 0.70; outdoor fall κ = 0.82; near-fall κ = 0.65) and cause (indoor fall κ = 0.75; outdoor fall κ = 0.62; near-fall κ = 0.56).

    Conclusions: The new PDF-Q developed in this study was found to be reliable for capturing the circumstances and consequences of recent falls and near-falls in older adults with PD.

    WOS© Citations 4Scopus© Citations 5  12
  • Publication
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    Brain activation associated with low‐ and high‐intensity concentric versus eccentric isokinetic contractions of the biceps brachii: An fNIRS study
    (Wiley, 2023)
    Studies have shown that neural responses following concentric (CON) and eccentric (ECC) muscle contractions are different, which suggests differences in motor control associated with CON and ECC contractions. This study aims to determine brain activation of the left primary motor cortex (M1) and left and right dorsolateral prefrontal cortices (DLPFCs) during ECC and CON of the right bicep brachii (BB) muscle at low- and high-contraction intensities. Eighteen young adults (13M/5F, 21–35 years) were recruited to participate in one familiarization and two testing sessions in a randomized crossover design. During each testing session, participants performed either ECC or CON contractions of the BB (3 sets × 8 reps) at low- (25% of maximum ECC/CON, 45°/s) and high-intensity (75% of maximum ECC/CON, 45°/s) on an isokinetic dynamometer. Eleven-channel functional near-infrared spectroscopy was used to measure changes in oxyhemoglobin (O2Hb) from the left M1, and left and right DLPFC during ECC and CON contractions. Maximum torque for ECC was higher than CON (43.3 ± 14.1 vs. 46.2 ± 15.7 N m, p = 0.025); however, no differences in O2Hb were observed between contraction types at low or high intensities in measured brain regions. High-intensity ECC and CON contractions resulted in greater increases in O2Hb of M1 and bilateral DLPFC compared to low-intensity ECC and CON contractions (p = 0.014). Our findings suggest no differences in O2Hb responses between contraction types at high and low intensities. High-contraction intensities resulted in greater brain activation of the M1 and bilateral DLPFC, which may have implications for neurorehabilitation to increase central adaptations from exercise.
    Scopus© Citations 1  20
  • Publication
    Metadata only
    Breaking up classroom sitting time with cognitively engaging physical activity: Behavioural and brain responses
    (2021)
    Mazzoli, Emiliano
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    Salmon, Jo
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    Pesce, Caterina
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    He, Jason
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    Ben-Soussan, Tal Dotan
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    Barnett, Lisa Michele
    Introduction Classroom-based active breaks are a feasible and effective way to reduce and break up sitting time, and to potentially benefit physical health in school children. However, the effect of active breaks on children’s cognitive functions and brain activity remains unclear.

    Objective We investigated the impact of an active break intervention on typically developing children’s cognitive functions and brain activity, sitting/standing/stepping, on-task behaviour, and enjoyment.

    Methods Up to 141 children, aged between 6 and 8 years (46% girls), were included, although about half of them completed two of the assessments (n = 77, working memory; n = 67, dorsolateral prefrontal cortex haemodynamic response). Classrooms from two consenting schools were randomly allocated to a six-week simple or cognitively engaging active break intervention. Classrooms from another school acted as a control group. The main analyses used linear mixed models, clustered at the class level and adjusted for sex and age, to investigate the effects of the interventions on response inhibition, lapses of attention, working memory, event-related brain haemodynamic response (dorsolateral prefrontal cortex). The mediating effects of sitting/standing/stepping on cognition/brain activity were also explored. To test intervention fidelity, we investigated differences by group on the change values in children’s sitting, standing, and moving patterns during class/school time using linear mixed models. Generalized linear mixed models clustered at the individual level were used to examine on-task behaviour data. For the intervention groups only, we also assessed children’s perceived enjoyment, physical exertion and mental exertion related to the active breaks and compared the results using independent t-tests.

    Results There was a significantly greater positive change in the proportion of deoxygenated haemoglobin in the left dorsolateral prefrontal cortex of children assigned to cognitively engaging active breaks compared to the control group (B = 1.53 × 10−07, 95% CI [0.17 × 10−07, 2.90 × 10−07]), which under the same cognitive performance is suggestive of improved neural efficiency. Mixed models showed no significant effects on response inhibition, lapses of attention, working memory. The mediation analysis revealed that the active breaks positively affected response inhibition via a change in sitting and standing time. The sitting, standing, and moving patterns and on-task behaviour were positively affected by the active breaks at end of trial, but not at mid-trial. Children in both intervention groups showed similarly high levels of enjoyment of active breaks.

    Conclusion Cognitively engaging active breaks may improve brain efficiency in the dorsolateral prefrontal cortex, the neural substrate of executive functions, as well as response inhibition, via effects partially mediated by the change in sitting/stepping time. Active breaks can effectively reduce sitting and increase standing/stepping and improve on-task behaviour, but the regular implementation of these activities might require time for teachers to become familiar with. Further research is needed to confirm what type of active break best facilitates cognition.

    WOS© Citations 15Scopus© Citations 20  11
  • Publication
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    A meta-analytical review of transcranial direct current stimulation parameters on upper limb motor learning in healthy older adults and people with Parkinson's disease
    (2022)
    Leuk, Jessie Siew Pin
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    Yow, Kai-En
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    Tan, Clenyce Zi-Xin
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    Hendy, Ashlee
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    Tan, Mika Kar-Wing
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    Current literature lacks consolidated evidence for the impact of stimulation parameters on the effects of transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS) in enhancing upper limb motor learning. Hence, we aim to synthesise available methodologies and results to guide future research on the usage of tDCS on upper limb motor learning, specifically in older adults and Parkinson’s disease (PD). Thirty-two studies (Healthy older adults, N = 526, M = 67.25, SD = 4.30 years; PD, N = 216, M = 66.62, SD = 6.25 years) were included in the meta-analysis. All included studies consisted of active and sham protocols. Random effect meta-analyses were conducted for (i) subjects (healthy older adults and PD); (ii) intensity (1.0, 1.5, 2 mA); (iii) electrode montage (unilateral anodal, bilateral anodal, unilateral cathodal); (iv) stimulation site (cerebellum, frontal, motor, premotor, SMA, somatosensory); (v) protocol (online, offline). Significant tDCS effect on motor learning was reported for both populations, intensity 1.0 and 2.0 mA, unilateral anodal and cathodal stimulation, stimulation site of the motor and premotor cortex, and both online and offline protocols. Regression showed no significant relationship between tDCS effects and density. The efficacy of tDCS is also not affected by the number of sessions. However, studies that reported only single session tDCS found significant negative association between duration with motor learning outcomes. Our findings suggest that different stimulation parameters enhanced upper limb motor learning in older adults and PD. Future research should combine tDCS with neuroimaging techniques to help with optimisation of the stimulation parameters, considering the type of task and population.
    WOS© Citations 1Scopus© Citations 1  28
  • Publication
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    Differences in the gut microbiome across typical ageing and in Parkinson's disease
    (2023)
    Nuzum, Nathan
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    Szymlek-Gay, Ewa A.
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    Loke, Stella
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    Dawson, Samantha L.
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    Hendy, Ashlee
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    Loughman, Amy
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    Macpherson, Helen
    The microbiota-gut-brain axis' role in Parkinson's disease (PD) pathophysiology, and how this differs from typical ageing, is poorly understood. Presently, gut-bacterial diversity, taxonomic abundance and metabolic bacterial pathways were compared across healthy young (n = 22, 18–35 years), healthy older (n = 33, 50–80 years), and PD groups (n = 18, 50–80 years) using shotgun sequencing and compositional data analysis. Associations between the gut-microbiome and PD symptoms, and between lifestyle factors (fibre intake, physical activity, and sleep) and the gut-microbiome were conducted. Alpha-diversity did not differ between PD participants and older adults, whilst beta-diversity differed between these groups. Lower abundance of Butyricimonas synergistica, a butyrate-producer, was associated with worse PD non-motor symptoms in the PD group. Regarding typical ageing, Bifidobacterium bifidum, was greater in the younger compared to older group, with no difference between the older and PD group. Abundance of metabolic pathways related to butyrate production did not differ among the groups, while other metabolic pathways differed among the three groups. Sleep efficiency was positively associated with Roseburia inulinivorans in the older group. These results highlight the relevance of gut-microbiota to PD and that reduced butyrate-production may be involved with PD pathophysiology. Future studies should account for lifestyle factors when investigating gut-microbiomes across ageing and in PD.
    WOS© Citations 3Scopus© Citations 4  43
  • Publication
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    Inhibition, excitation and bilateral transfer following a unilateral complex finger-tapping task in young and older adults
    (2021)
    Nuzum, Nathan
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    Macpherson, Helen
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    Loughman, Amy
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    Szymlek-Gay, Ewa A.
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    Hendy, Ashlee
    Neuroplasticity underpins motor learning, with abnormal neuroplasticity related to age-associated motor declines. Bilateral transfer of motor learning, through rehabilitation, may mitigate these declines; however, the magnitude of transfer may be reduced in older populations. This study investigated excitatory and inhibitory pathways in the trained and untrained hemispheres following unilateral training of a complex finger-tapping task across ageing. Fifteen young (26.2 ± 3.8 years) and 11 older adults (63.7 ± 15.4 years) received transcranial magnetic stimulation, although surface electromyography was recorded from the extensor digitorum communis (EDC) and abductor pollicis brevis (APB), before and after practicing a complex finger-tapping task with the dominant hand. Excitability, inhibition (expressed as percent change scores from pre- to post-training), motor task performance and bilateral transfer were assessed between groups. Investigation of hemispheric differences within each group was completed for measures that significantly differed between groups. There were no between-group differences in task performance or bilateral transfer, with task performance improving post-training irrespective of group for both hands (p < 0.05). Pre- to post-inhibition change scores of the untrained EDC muscle increased (p = 0.034) in older compared with younger adults, indicating reduced inhibition in older adults. Inhibition change scores significantly differed between hemispheres for the young group only (p = 0.037). Only the younger group presented with hemispheric lateralisation, providing some support for the Hemispheric Asymmetry Reduction in OLDer adults (HAROLD) hypothesis. Whether this reduction is evidence of de-differentiation or compensation will need to be confirmed with additional measures.
    WOS© Citations 3Scopus© Citations 3  199
  • Publication
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    The effects of combined physical and cognitive training on inhibitory control: A systematic review and meta-analysis
    (2021)
    Dhir, Sakshi
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    Chamberlain, Samuel R
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    Tyler, Kaelasha
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    Yücel, Murat
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    Segrave, Rebecca A
    While strong inhibitory control is critical for health and wellbeing, there are no broadly applicable effective behavioural interventions that enhance it. This meta-analysis examined the neurocognitive rationale for combined physical and cognitive training and synthesised the rapidly growing body of evidence examining combined paradigms to enhance inhibitory control. Across the research to date, there was a small positive effect (n studies = 16, n participants = 832) of combined training on improving inhibitory control. Sub-group analyses showed small-moderate positive effects when the physical component of the combined training was moderately intense, as opposed to low or vigorous intensities; moderate positive effects were found in older adults, as compared to adolescents and adults; and healthy individuals and those with vascular cognitive impairment, as compared to ADHD, ASD, mild cognitive impairment and cancer survivors. This is the first meta-analysis to provide evidence that combined physical, specifically when moderately intense, and cognitive training has the capacity to improve inhibitory control, particularly when delivered to healthy individuals and those experiencing age-related decline.
    WOS© Citations 16Scopus© Citations 23  25
  • Publication
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    Task-related brain functional network reconfigurations relate to motor recovery in chronic subcortical stroke
    (2021)
    Cheng, Hsiao-Ju
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    Ng, Kwun Kei
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    Qian, Xing
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    Ji, Fang
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    Lu, Zhong Kang
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    Hong, Xin
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    Fatima Ali Nasrallah
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    Ang, Kai Keng
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    Chuang, Kai-Hsiang
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    Guan, Cuntai
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    Yu, Haoyong
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    Chew, Effie
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    Zhou, Juan Helen
    Stroke leads to both regional brain functional disruptions and network reorganization. However, how brain functional networks reconfigure as task demand increases in stroke patients and whether such reorganization at baseline would facilitate post-stroke motor recovery are largely unknown. To address this gap, brain functional connectivity (FC) were examined at rest and motor tasks in eighteen chronic subcortical stroke patients and eleven age-matched healthy controls. Stroke patients underwent a 2-week intervention using a motor imagery-assisted brain computer interface-based (MI-BCI) training with or without transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS). Motor recovery was determined by calculating the changes of the upper extremity component of the Fugl–Meyer Assessment (FMA) score between pre- and post-intervention divided by the pre-intervention FMA score. The results suggested that as task demand increased (i.e., from resting to passive unaffected hand gripping and to active affected hand gripping), patients showed greater FC disruptions in cognitive networks including the default and dorsal attention networks. Compared to controls, patients had lower task-related spatial similarity in the somatomotor–subcortical, default–somatomotor, salience/ventral attention–subcortical and subcortical–subcortical connections, suggesting greater inefficiency in motor execution. Importantly, higher baseline network-specific FC strength (e.g., dorsal attention and somatomotor) and more efficient brain network reconfigurations (e.g., somatomotor and subcortical) from rest to active affected hand gripping at baseline were related to better future motor recovery. Our findings underscore the importance of studying functional network reorganization during task-free and task conditions for motor recovery prediction in stroke.
    WOS© Citations 14Scopus© Citations 22  45
  • Publication
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    The Central Mechanisms of Resistance Training and Its Effects on Cognitive Function
    (2021)
    Chow, Zi-Siong
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    Moreland, Ashleigh T.
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    Macpherson, Helen
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    Resistance exercise is used extensively in athletic and general populations to induce neuromuscular adaptations to increase muscle size and performance. Exercise parameters such as exercise frequency, intensity, duration and modality are carefully manipulated to induce specific adaptations to the neuromuscular system. While the benefits of resistance exercise on the neuromuscular system are well documented, there is growing evidence to suggest that resistance exercise, even when performed acutely, can lead to neuroplastic changes within the central nervous system (CNS) and improve cognitive functioning. As such, resistance exercise has been proposed as a novel adjuvant rehabilitation strategy in populations that suffer from neurological or neurocognitive impairments (i.e. Parkinson's and Alzheimer's dementia) or even to attenuate age-related declines in cognitive health. In this review, we present evidence for the neuroplastic effects and cognitive benefits of resistance exercise and propose some of the underlying mechanisms that drive neuroplasticity following resistance training. We will further discuss the effects of exercise parameters, in particular exercise frequency, intensity, duration and modality to improve cognitive health. Lastly, we will highlight some of the existing limitations in the literature surrounding the use of resistance exercise to improve cognitive function and propose considerations to improve future studies in this field. In summary, the current evidence supports the role of resistance exercise, as a stand alone or in combination with aerobic exercise, for benefiting cognitive health and that it should be considered as an adjuvant therapy to treat age- or disease-related cognitive declines.
    WOS© Citations 19Scopus© Citations 22  13
  • Publication
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    Clinical determinants of dual tasking in people with premanifest Huntington disease
    (2021)
    Reyes, Alvaro
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    Bartlett, Danielle
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    Rankin, Timothy J.
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    Zaenker, Pauline
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    Turner, Kate
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    Fu, Shih Ching
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    Domingos, Josefa
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    Georgiou-Karistianis, Nellie
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    Ziman, Mel
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    Cruickshank, Travis

    Objective. Dual-tasking deficiencies are common in people with Huntington disease (HD) and contribute to reduced functional independence. To date, few studies have investigated the determinants of dual-tasking deficiencies in this population. The reliability of dual-tasking measures has also been poorly investigated in HD. The purpose of this study was to investigate the influence of clinical determinants on dual-tasking performance and to determine the association of disease burden outcomes on dual-tasking performance in individuals with premanifest HD.

    Methods. Thirty-six individuals with premanifest HD and 28 age-and sex-matched healthy controls were recruited for this study. Participants performed 3 single-task (2 cognitive and 1 motor) and 2 dual-task assessments, comprising motor (postural stability) and cognitive (simple or complex mental arithmetic) components. In addition, participants performed a comprehensive clinical battery comprising motor, cognitive, mood, and sleep assessments as well as lifestyle and disease burden measures.

    Results. Poorer sleep quality was associated with greater cognitive dual-task cost in individuals with premanifest HD. Compared with healthy controls, people with premanifest HD demonstrated an impaired capacity to dual task. Dual-task measures exhibited acceptable test–retest reliability in premanifest HD and healthy control groups.

    Conclusion. These results show that dual-tasking measures are sensitive and reliable in individuals with premanifest HD. Furthermore, poor sleep quality is associated with worse cognitive performance on dual tasks, which should be considered by rehabilitation specialists when examining and therapeutically managing dual-tasking problems in individuals with HD and other neurodegenerative populations in the future.

    Impact. This study adds important knowledge to the sparse literature on dual-tasking deficiencies in people with HD. When examining and therapeutically managing dual-tasking problems in this and other neurodegenerative populations, rehabilitation specialists should consider that people with premanifest HD may have an impaired capacity to dual task. Clinicians also should assess sleep quality, as poorer sleep quality is associated with worse cognitive performance on dual tasks in these individuals.

    Lay Summary. If you have premanifest HD and poor quality of sleep, you may pay more attention to maintaining postural stability rather than performing arithmetic calculations to reduce the risk of falling

    WOS© Citations 2Scopus© Citations 2  38