November 06, 2013
Joseph Moore

Physical Therapy Hosts International Gait, Balance Symposium

The Program in Physical Therapy welcomed physicians, physical therapists and other professionals from around the world for the third International Symposium on Gait and Balance in Multiple Sclerosis.

The Saint Louis University Program in Physical Therapy in partnership with Oregon Health and Science University hosted the third International Symposium on Gait and Balance in Multiple Sclerosis Oct. 18-19.

The conference was attended by physicians, physical therapists, occupational therapists and rehabilitation scientists. The morning session focused on measurement tools for gait and balance in multiple sclerosis and featured the latest data from the European Rehabilitation in Multiple Sclerosis (RIMS) Special Interest Group on Mobility. The afternoon session focused on the contributions of ataxia to gait and balance dysfunction in people with MS.

Joanne Wagner, Ph.D., assistant professor in the Program in Physical Therapy, is a founding member of the organizing committee. The third International Symposium on Gait and Balance was a unique and exciting meeting that brought together a multidisciplinary group of researchers and clinicians dedicated to understanding the mechanisms contributing to gait and balance dysfunction in those living with MS and developing therapies to improve mobility function in this patient population.

The objectives of the conference were to describe and discuss the attributes of a good measure, available measurement toolboxes for gait and balance, lessons learned about the measurement of gait and balance from the Rehabilitation in Multiple Sclerosis multicenter trials and the contributions of ataxia to gait and balance dysfunction in MS.

Presenters at the symposium included faculty from Saint Louis University, Cleveland Clinic's Mellen Center for Multiple Sclerosis, Samuel Merrit University, Hasselt University's REVAL Research Institute (Belgium), University of Delaware, Washington University School of Medicine, Johns Hopkins University/Kennedy Krieger Institute, Oregon Health and Science University, and University of California San Francisco.

The 2014 Symposium will be hosted by the Cleveland Clinic's Mellen Center for Multiple Sclerosis.

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