Affordable Access

Access to the full text

Gait and Balance Assessments using Smartphone Applications in Parkinson’s Disease: A Systematic Review

  • Abou, Libak1
  • Peters, Joseph1
  • Wong, Ellyce1
  • Akers, Rebecca2
  • Dossou, Mauricette Sènan3
  • Sosnoff, Jacob J.4
  • Rice, Laura A.1
  • 1 University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, Urbana, IL, USA , Urbana (United States)
  • 2 University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center, Oklahoma City, OK, USA , Oklahoma City (United States)
  • 3 Centre National Hospitalier et Universitaire de Pneumo-Phtisiologie, Cotonou, Littoral, Benin , Cotonou, Littoral (Benin)
  • 4 University of Kansas, Kansas City, KS, USA , Kansas City (United States)
Published Article
Journal of Medical Systems
Publication Date
Aug 15, 2021
DOI: 10.1007/s10916-021-01760-5
Springer Nature
  • Mobile & Wireless Health


Gait dysfunctions and balance impairments are key fall risk factors and associated with reduced quality of life in individuals with Parkinson’s Disease (PD). Smartphone-based assessments show potential to increase remote monitoring of the disease. This review aimed to summarize the validity, reliability, and discriminative abilities of smartphone applications to assess gait, balance, and falls in PD. Two independent reviewers screened articles systematically identified through PubMed, Web of Science, Scopus, CINAHL, and SportDiscuss. Studies that used smartphone-based gait, balance, or fall applications in PD were retrieved. The validity, reliability, and discriminative abilities of the smartphone applications were summarized and qualitatively discussed. Methodological quality appraisal of the studies was performed using the quality assessment tool for observational cohort and cross-sectional studies. Thirty-one articles were included in this review. The studies present mostly with low risk of bias. In total, 52% of the studies reported validity, 22% reported reliability, and 55% reported discriminative abilities of smartphone applications to evaluate gait, balance, and falls in PD. Those studies reported strong validity, good to excellent reliability, and good discriminative properties of smartphone applications. Only 19% of the studies formally evaluated the usability of their smartphone applications. The current evidence supports the use of smartphone to assess gait and balance, and detect freezing of gait in PD. More studies are needed to explore the use of smartphone to predict falls in this population. Further studies are also warranted to evaluate the usability of smartphone applications to improve remote monitoring in this population. Registration: PROSPERO CRD 42020198510

Report this publication


Seen <100 times