Cancela JM, Ayán C, Gutiérrez-Santiago A, Prieto I, Varela S
Objective: This pilot study aimed to determine if the Senior Fitness Test (SFT) battery can be applied to subjects with Parkinson’s disease (PD) and whether its results can be reliable indicators of disease severity.
Methods: Thirty people with mild to moderate PD performed the SFT and completed the Parkinson’s Disease Questionnaire (PDQ-39) and the Unified Parkinson’s Disease Rating Scale (UPDRS). To compare the metric properties of the SFT battery with the UPDRS and the PDQ-39, a SFT sum-score was created.
Results: The tests that compose the SFT were successfully completed by the patients, except for the “Two-Minute Step Test” (2MST), which had to be shortened. We observed a strong correlation among the SFT’s sum-score and the total scores of the PDQ-39 and the UPDRS. Some correlation was also found among the SFT’s sum-score and the analyzed subscales, except for those assessing mental and cognitive levels.
Conclusion: The SFT appears to be a useful tool to assess functional fitness in people with PD: it can be carried out in the clinical setting albeit with some minor modifications. However, its validity as an indicator of disease severity remains to be confirmed.