To assess the utility of online patient self-report outcomes in a rare disease, we attempted to observe the effects of corticosteroids in delaying age at fulltime wheelchair use in Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD) using data from 1,057 males from DuchenneConnect, an online registry. Data collected were compared to prior natural history data in regard to age at diagnosis, mutation spectrum, and age at loss of ambulation. Because registrants reported differences in steroid and other medication usage, as well as age and ambulation status, we could explore these data for correlations with age at loss of ambulation. Using multivariate analysis, current steroid usage was the most significant and largest independent predictor of improved wheelchair-free survival. Thus, these online self-report data were sufficient to retrospectively observe that current steroid use by patients with DMD is associated with a delay in loss of ambulation. Comparing commonly used steroid drugs, deflazacort prolonged ambulation longer than prednisone (median 14 years and 13 years, respectively). Further, use of Vitamin D and Coenzyme Q10, insurance status, and age at diagnosis after 4 years were also significant, but smaller, independent predictors of longer wheelchair-free survival. Nine other common supplements were also individually tested but had lower study power. This study demonstrates the utility of DuchenneConnect data to observe therapeutic differences, and highlights needs for improvement in quality and quantity of patient-report data, which may allow exploration of drug/therapeutic practice combinations impractical to study in clinical trial settings. Further, with the low barrier to participation, we anticipate substantial growth in the dataset in the coming years.
Data is currently lacking anchoring a 30-meter longitudinal change in walking ability by 6-minute walk test (6MWT) in Duchenne muscular dystrophy as a minimal clinically important difference and “clinically meaningful” person-reported outcomes (PROs) at differing levels of ambulatory ability.
We describe correlation between measures, 1-year change in measures, and correlation of 1-year changes between measures for the six-minute walk test (6MWT), 10-meter run/walk velocity, PedsQL and POSNA Pediatric Outcomes Data Collection Instrument (PODCI) in 24 4-12 year old. ambulatory DMD and 36 typical controls, and determine if minimal clinically important differences (MCID) of PROs contribute to different estimates of 6-minute walk distance (6MWD) change at differing levels of ability.
PedsQL total and physical function and PODCI global, transfer/mobility and sports/physical function PROs demonstrated significant differences between DMD and controls (p<0.00001). In DMD, 6MWD and 10-meter run/walk velocity were correlated with PODCI domain scores, with the transfer/mobility scale showing the strongest relationship (r=0.79 and r=0.76). In DMD, 6MWD distance and 10-meter run/walk velocity weakly correlated with PedsQL domain scores. In DMD, 6MWD, 10-meter run/walk velocity, and PODCI global and transfer and basic mobility demonstrated significant one-year change and exceeded the amount of change representing MCID. In DMD, 6MWD change highly correlated with change in PODCI global and PODCI transfer/mobility scores (r=0.76 and r=0.93). PODCI global and PODCI transfer/mobility scales provided the best estimates of 6MWT performance. A “meaningful” 4.5 point change in a low PODCI transfer / basic mobility score of 30 to 34.5 was associated with a 5.6m 6MWD change from 150.3 to 155.9m. At PODCI levels closer to normative levels for healthy controls, the change in 6MWD distance associated with a “meaningful” change in PODCI scores was almost 46m.
At lower levels of function, smaller increases in 6MWD result in meaningful change in quality of life (QoL) instrument scores. At higher levels of function, larger increases may be necessary to achieve the same QoL change score.
Introduction: Individuals with dystrophinopathy lose upper extremity strength in proximal muscles followed by those more distal. Current upper extremity evaluation tools fail to fully capture changes in upper extremity strength and function across the disease spectrum as they tend to focus solely on distal ability. The Kinect by Microsoft is a gaming interface that can gather positional information about an individual’s upper extremity movement which can be used to determine functional reaching volume, velocity of movement, and rate of fatigue while playing an engaging video game. The purpose of this study was to determine the feasibility of using the Kinect platform to assess upper extremity function in individuals with dystrophinopathy across the spectrum of abilities. Methods: Investigators developed a proof-of-concept device, ACTIVE (Abilities Captured Through Interactive Video Evaluation), to measure functional reaching volume, movement velocity, and rate of fatigue. Five subjects with dystrophinopathy and 5 normal controls were tested using ACTIVE during one testing session. A single subject with dystrophinopathy was simultaneously tested with ACTIVE and a marker-based motion analysis system to establish preliminary validity of measurements. Results: ACTIVE proof-of-concept ranked the upper extremity abilities of subjects with dystrophinopathy by Brooke score, and also differentiated them from performance of normal controls for the functional reaching volume and velocity tests. Preliminary test-retest reliability of the ACTIVE for 2 sequential trials was excellent for functional reaching volume (ICC=0.986, p<0.001) and velocity trials (ICC=0.963, p<0.001). Discussion: The data from our pilot study with ACTIVE proof-of-concept demonstrates that newly available gaming technology has potential to be used to create a low-cost, widely-accessible and functional upper extremity outcome measure for use with children and adults with dystrophinopathy.