Data_Sheet_2_Patients and Health Professional's Perspective of Functional Mobility in Parkinson's Disease.docx
Background: Functional mobility (FM) is the person's ability to move to accomplish daily living tasks and activities. FM limitations are common in Parkinson's disease, increase with disease progression, and can be highly disabling. Although several studies in Parkinson's disease (PD) field use this concept, only recently, a formal definition has been proposed.
Objective: We aimed to explore patient's and health professional's perspectives of FM in PD.
Methods: A focus group methodology has been used. Four focus groups, with a total of 10 patients and 10 health professionals, were performed. Six patients were early stage and four advanced stage. The health professional's group was composed of five neurologists and five physiotherapists. The suitability of the new concept, the impact of FM limitations in PD patient's daily routine, and the potential benefit of walking aids have been discussed.
Results: All participants were able to provide a spontaneous definition of FM, matching with the proposed concept. All agreed that PD affects patient's FM, increasing the limitations with disease progression, and with the existence of a serious prejudice with walking aids that hinders its use. Early-stage patient's perspective seems to be more in line with neurologist's perspective, while the views of advanced-stage patients were closer to physiotherapist's views.
Conclusion: FM concept was considered as intuitive and useful. FM limitations have an important physical and social impact in the advanced stage of the disease. Although patients and health professionals acknowledge walking aid's benefit improving patient's FM, the prejudice associated with this type of tools limits its recommendation and use.