This site became the new on June 19th. Learn more.
Show more Menu IMPORTANT: Listing of a study on this site does not reflect endorsement by the National Institutes of Health. Talk with a trusted healthcare professional before volunteering for a study. Read more... Menu IMPORTANT: Talk with a trusted healthcare professional before volunteering for a study. Read more... Menu
Give us feedback

Sensory Cues for Freezing in Parkinson's Disease

The recruitment status of this study is unknown. The completion date has passed and the status has not been verified in more than two years.
Verified May 2006 by Austin Health.
Recruitment status was:  Not yet recruiting
Information provided by:
Austin Health Identifier:
First received: May 3, 2006
Last updated: June 22, 2006
Last verified: May 2006
The purpose of this study is (1) to determine if patient triggered sensory(auditory, visual and tactile) cues can help treat freezing of gait in Parkinson's disease, and (2) to assess if unexpected (randomized) cues are more effective than anticipated ones.

Condition Intervention
Parkinson's Disease Device: Sensory Cueing Device

Study Type: Interventional
Study Design: Allocation: Randomized
Intervention Model: Crossover Assignment
Masking: Single Blind
Primary Purpose: Treatment
Official Title: Effect of Randomized Patient-Triggered Sensory Cues for Freezing of Gait in Parkinson's Disease

Resource links provided by NLM:

Further study details as provided by Austin Health:

Primary Outcome Measures:
  • Total walking time
  • Number of freezes
  • Freeze time – duration of walk in which patient experiences freezing
  • Walking time – duration of walk during which patient is not experiencing freezing
  • Average duration of freeze

Estimated Enrollment: 20
Study Start Date: July 2006
Estimated Study Completion Date: January 2007
Detailed Description:

Freezing of gait (FOG) is defined as a transient halt in motor activity, wherein the patient appears “as if nailed to the floor.” It is a common phenomenon in Parkinson’s disease (PD), both when medications are at their peak (“on state”) and at their lowest effectiveness (“off state”). While “off” FOG often responds to dopaminergic medications, “on” FOG is a difficult to treat, causing significant distress for the patient, and elevating risk of falls and morbidity.

A few small studies have suggested that auditory and visual sensory cues, in the form of continuous stimuli such as a clicking metronome, music, or horizontal lines drawn the floor, may help patients with gait freezing. In this study, we aim to: (1) evaluate if stimuli (including visual, auditory as well as tactile cues) which are present only on patient triggering are effective for FOG in PD; (2) investigate if presentation of unexpected cues, in the form of randomized sensory stimuli, are more effective that anticipated cues.

Participants will include patients diagnosed with PD, stabilized on drug therapy, with adequate vision, hearing, and mentation to respond to cuing, and experiencing “on” FOG. Patients will be evaluated during a single session. A small device which we have developed will be placed around the neck, and emit either repetitive beeping, a flashing line on the floor, or a slight vibration felt over the neck when the patient presses a button on the front panel in response to FOG. Participants will be videotaped walking a 15 m strip with: (1) no cues; (2) auditory cues only; (3) visual cues only; (4) tactile cues only; and (5) randomized cues. The order in which patients receive the cues will be randomized.

A reviewer will watch the videotape with sound off so that they will be blinded to the cues. The Total Time, Freezing Time (duration of walk in which patient experiences freezing, Walking Time (duration of walk during which patient is not experiencing freezing), and Average Duration of Freeze will be recorded for each walk.


Ages Eligible for Study:   40 Years to 95 Years   (Adult, Senior)
Sexes Eligible for Study:   All
Accepts Healthy Volunteers:   No

Inclusion Criteria:

  • Currently living in Melbourne, Australia (note that we cannot respond to enquiries from outside of this area)
  • Confirmed diagnosis of Parkinson’s disease
  • Stabilized drug therapy for at least 1 month prior to the study and during
  • Hearing and vision – Able to identify lines on floor, hear metronome
  • MMSE >24
  • Able to walk independently (with or without a mechanical aid)
  • Able to give informed consent

Exclusion Criteria:

  • Severe comorbidity (joint problems, neuromuscular disorder affecting mobility)
  • Severe dyskinesias
  Contacts and Locations
Choosing to participate in a study is an important personal decision. Talk with your doctor and family members or friends about deciding to join a study. To learn more about this study, you or your doctor may contact the study research staff using the Contacts provided below. For general information, see Learn About Clinical Studies.

Please refer to this study by its identifier: NCT00322426

Contact: Kerrie Schoffer, MD 03-9496-2085

Australia, Victoria
Austin Hospital Not yet recruiting
Melbourne, Victoria, Australia, 3084
Principal Investigator: Kerrie Schoffer, MD         
Sponsors and Collaborators
Austin Health
Principal Investigator: Kerrie Schoffer, MD Austin Hospital, Melbourne Australia
  More Information Identifier: NCT00322426     History of Changes
Other Study ID Numbers: 1-Schoffer
Study First Received: May 3, 2006
Last Updated: June 22, 2006

Keywords provided by Austin Health:
Freezing of Gait
Parkinson's Disease
Sensory Cues

Additional relevant MeSH terms:
Parkinson Disease
Parkinsonian Disorders
Basal Ganglia Diseases
Brain Diseases
Central Nervous System Diseases
Nervous System Diseases
Movement Disorders
Neurodegenerative Diseases processed this record on August 16, 2017