Effects of aging on finger movements in multiple sclerosis

Alessio Signori, Maria Pia Sormani, Caterina Lapucci, Antonio Uccelli, Marco Bove, Laura Bonzano

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Background: People with multiple sclerosis (PwMS) report impaired hand movements and coordination. With an engineered glove we demonstrated altered finger movements in PwMS; increasing age resulted in decreased performance in healthy subjects (normative data). This study aims at investigating aging effects on finger motor performance in PwMS, in relation to disease duration and Expanded Disability Status Scale (EDSS). Methods: Ninety-six PwMS performed repetitive finger opposition movements with the dominant hand and both hands at maximal velocity or metronome-paced. Performance was compared with the norms, and correlation coefficients between finger motor parameters, age, disease duration and EDSS were calculated. Results: The majority of subjects was outside of the normal range according to age and probability increased with level of disability. Age significantly correlated with the glove parameters (r ranged in absolute value between 0.22–0.31; p-value in the range 0.002–0.049). Older subjects with lower disability showed worse performance than younger (p = 0.044 and 0.02), whilst younger subjects with higher disability performed similarly to older (p = 0.72 and 0.49). Conclusion: Finger motor performance assessment provides important hints about upper limb disability, which should be evaluated in relation to age, disease duration and EDSS.

Original languageEnglish
Article number101449
JournalMultiple Sclerosis and Related Disorders
Publication statusPublished - Jan 2020


  • Aging
  • Disability
  • Finger movements
  • Multiple sclerosis
  • Quantitative evaluation
  • Upper limb

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neurology
  • Clinical Neurology


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