Minimum number of days required for a reliable estimate of daily step count and energy expenditure, in people with MS who walk unaided

Michelle Norris, Ross Anderson, Robert W. Motl, Sara Hayes, Susan Coote

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Abstract

Background and purpose
The purpose of this study was to examine the minimum number of days needed to reliably estimate daily step count and energy expenditure (EE), in people with multiple sclerosis (MS) who walked unaided.

Methods
Seven days of activity monitor data were collected for 26 participants with MS (age = 44.5 ± 11.9 years; time since diagnosis = 6.5 ± 6.2 years; Patient Determined Disease Steps = ≤3). Mean daily step count and mean daily EE (kcal) were calculated for all combinations of days (127 combinations), and compared to the respective 7-day mean daily step count or mean daily EE using intra-class correlations (ICC), the Generalizability Theory and Bland-Altman.

Results
For step count, ICC values of 0.94–0.98 and a G-coefficient of 0.81 indicate a minimum of any random 2-day combination is required to reliably calculate mean daily step count. For EE, ICC values of 0.96–0.99 and a G-coefficient of 0.83 indicate a minimum of any random 4-day combination is required to reliably calculate mean daily EE. For Bland-Altman analyses all combinations of days, bar single day combinations, resulted in a mean bias within ±10%, when expressed as a percentage of the 7-day mean daily step count or mean daily EE.

Conclusions
A minimum of 2 days for step count and 4 days for EE, regardless of day type, is needed to reliably estimate daily step count and daily EE, in people with MS who walk unaided.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)201-206
JournalGait and Posture
Volume53
Early online date8 Feb 2017
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 Mar 2017

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