Current Evidence of Gait Modification with Real-time Biofeedback to Alter Kinetic, Temporospatial, and Function-Related Outcomes: A Review

Oladipo Eddo, Bryndan Lindsey, Shane V. Caswell, Nelson Cortes


Background: Gait retraining using real-time biofeedback (RTB) may have positive outcomes in decreasing knee adduction moment (KAM) in healthy individuals and has shown equal likelihood in patients with knee osteoarthritis (OA). Currently, there is no consensus regarding the most effective gait modification strategy, mode of biofeedback or treatment dosage. Objective: The purpose of this review was: i) to assess if gait retraining interventions using RTB are valuable to reduce KAM, pain, and improve function in individuals with knee osteoarthritis, ii) to evaluate the effectiveness of different gait modifications and modes of RTB in reducing KAM in healthy individuals, and iii) to assess the impact of gait retraining interventions with RTB on other variables that may affect clinical outcomes. Methods: Seven electronic databases were searched using five search terms. Studies that utilized any form of gait retraining with RTB to improve one or a combination of the following measures were included: KAM, knee pain, and function. Twelve studies met the inclusion criteria, evaluating eleven distinctive gait modifications and three modes of RTB. Results: All but one study showed positive outcomes. Self-selected and multi-parameter gait modifications showed the greatest reductions in KAM with visual and haptic RTB being more effective than auditory. Conclusions: Current evidence suggests that gait modification using RTB can Positively alter KAM in asymptomatic and symptomatic participants. However, the existing literature is limited and of low quality, with the optimal combination strategies remaining unclear (gait and biofeedback mode). Future studies should employ randomized controlled study designs to compare the effects of different gait modification strategies and biofeedback modes on individuals with knee OA.


Gait Retraining, Real-time Biofeedback, Osteoarthritis, Knee Adduction Moment

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