IMR Press / JIN / Volume 21 / Issue 5 / DOI: 10.31083/j.jin2105129
Open Access Original Research
Gait Disorders and Magnetic Resonance Imaging Characteristics in Older Adults with Cerebral Small Vessel Disease
Show Less
1 Department of Neurology, Second Hospital of Tianjin Medical University, 300211 Tianjin, China
2 Department of Rehabilitation, Second Hospital of Tianjin Medical University, 300211 Tianjin, China
*Correspondence: (Xin Li)
These authors contributed equally.
Academic Editor: Rafael Franco
J. Integr. Neurosci. 2022, 21(5), 129;
Submitted: 8 February 2022 | Revised: 24 March 2022 | Accepted: 31 March 2022 | Published: 21 July 2022
Copyright: © 2022 The Author(s). Published by IMR Press.
This is an open access article under the CC BY 4.0 license.

Background: This study aims to explore the features of gait disorders with cerebral small vessel disease (CSVD), and results from magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) with diffusion tensor imaging (DTI) were analyzed. Methods: The 139 patients with CSVD were divided into two groups by the Tinetti scale scores: the gait disorder (GD) group with a score <24 (63 patients) and the normal gait (GN) group with a score 24 (76 patients). A series of scales and 3.0T MRI with DTI were used to analyze the correlation between the abnormal gaits and imaging findings. Results: The differences in the Barthel Index, Unified Parkinson’s Disease Rating Scale part III, and Montreal Cognitive Assessment (MoCA) scores between the two groups were significant (p < 0.05), and there were significant correlations between MoCA and total gait scores (r = 0.201, p = 0.002). The GD group had a more degraded gait score, widened gait base, and degraded gait length than the GN group (p < 0.05). There were significant differences between the two groups (p < 0.05) in white matter (WM) hyperintensities (WMH) of the Fazekas scale grade 2–3 and lacunes. The GD group had a greater total MRI burden than the GN group (p < 0.05). In DTI parameters, the GD group had lower fractional anisotropy (FA) and higher mean diffusion (MD) values in WM tracts in many areas around the ventricles (family-wise error corrected, p < 0.05). Significant correlations were observed between FA and the total gait score (r = 0.467, p < 0.01), and also between MD and total gait score (r  = –0.422, p < 0.01). Conclusions: Patients with CSVD with gait disorders had more WMH of Fazekas scale grade 2–3, lacunes, and total MRI burden than the GN patients, and those with gait disorders may suffer from demyelination of nerve fibers and damage to the fibers’ microstructures.

cerebral small vessel disease
gait disorder
total MRI burden
Fig. 1.
Back to top