Usefulness of the Scale for the Assessment and Rating of Ataxia (SARA) in Ataxic Stroke Patients

Bo-Ram Kim, Jeong-Hoon Lim, Seung Ah Lee, Seunglee Park, Seong-Eun Koh, In-Sik Lee, Heeyoune Jung, Jongmin Lee
Annals of Rehabilitation Medicine 2011, 35 (6): 772-80

OBJECTIVE: To examine the usefulness of the Scale for the Assessment and Rating of Ataxia (SARA) in ataxic stroke patients.

METHOD: This was a retrospective study of 54 patients following their first ataxic stroke. The data used in the analysis comprised ambulation status on admission and scores on the SARA, the Korean version of the Modified Barthel Index (K-MBI) and the Berg Balance Scale (BBS). The subjects were divided into four groups by gait status and into five groups by level of dependency in activities of daily living (ADLs) based on their K-MBI scores. Data were subjected to a ROC curve analysis to obtain cutoff values on the SARA for individual gait status and levels of activity dependency. The correlations between the SARA, K-MBI and BBS scores were also computed.

RESULTS: There was significant correlation between the SARA and the K-MBI scores (p<0.001), and this correlation (r=-0.792) was higher than that found between the BBS and the K-MBI scores (r=0.710). The SARA scores of upper extremity ataxia categories were significantly related to the K-MBI scores of upper extremity related function (p<0.001). The SARA scores were also significantly correlated negatively with ambulation status (p<0.001) and positively with ADL dependency (p<0.001). In the ROC analysis, patients with less than 5.5 points on the SARA had minimal dependency in ADL, while those with more than 23 points showed total dependency.

CONCLUSION: SARA corresponds well with gait status and ADL dependency in ataxic stroke patients and is considered to be a useful functional measure in that patient group.

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