2019 ACC Meeting of the Minds- Caroline Westwood

Monday, May 6, 2019

2018 ACC Meeting of the Minds- Caroline Westwood

In March 2019, the ACC Meeting of the Minds Conference was held at the University of Louisville and six remarkable Duke University seniors were chosen to present their work to their ACC peers.

During the 2019 ACC Meeting of the Minds, Caroline Westwood '19 presented a poster on "Postural Stability under Dual-Task Conditions: Development of a Post-Concussion Assessment for Lower Extremity Injury Risk".

Concussions are an unfortunate consequence of sports participation. They affect motor control, neurocognitive performance, and recent reports indicate they increase the risk of lower extremity musculoskeletal injury (LEMI) upon return to sport. The increased risk of secondary LEMI may indicate the need to establish a test that is predictive of LEMI risk following return to sport. The purpose of this study was to assess the between-session reliability and the effects of adding a cognitive task to static and dynamic postural stability testing. Twelve healthy, physically active subjects (Age: 22.3 ± 2.9 years, Height: 174.4 ± 7.5 cm, Weight: 154.5 ± 28.0 lbs) participated. Subjects underwent static and dynamic postural stability testing with and without the addition of a cognitive task (Stroop task) on two separate days. Static postural stability was assessed with a single-leg balance task under eyes open (with and without the addition of the Stroop task) and eyes closed conditions. Variability of each ground reaction force component was averaged across three trials for each of the static postural stability conditions. Dynamic postural stability testing consisted of forward jump over a hurdle with a one-legged landing performed with and without the addition of the Stroop task. A stability index was calculated based on the resultant ground reaction force and each of its components. Interclass correlation coefficients (ICC, 2,1) were calculated to determine the between-session reliability of each testing condition. Comparisons were made across the static conditions and between the dynamic postural stability tasks. The addition of a cognitive load proved to have moderate to excellent between-session reliability for the majority of variables calculated during static (ICC values 0.74 – 0.81) and dynamic postural stability testing (ICC values 0.77 – 0.80; ML=0.800, V=0.774, DPSI=0.781). No significant differences were observed between the postural stability tasks (with or without the Stroop task). Postural stability tasks with the addition of a cognitive load prove to have moderate to excellent reliability in a healthy population. These results provide new evidence on the feasibility of dual-task postural stability testing when examining risk of LEMI following return to sport.