Effect of a Music Training Biofeedback Program in Movement Disorders

Type: Clinical Trial, Mind and Body

Principal Investigator: Dr. Bin Hu

Institutions Affiliated: University of Calgary

Students: Michelle Au (UGRAD), Kallie Luan (UGRAD)

Number of Awards: 4

Background: Parkinson’s Disease (PD) is a neurological disorder characterized by rigidity and motor deficits. Conventional pharmaceutical treatment of PD has limited utility as patients require ever-increasing doses for efficacy, yet develop psychotic and other motor deficit side effects if the dose is too high. Ambulosono is a biofeedback program that uses music to assist PD patients in managing their motor dysfunctions.

Findings: Ambulosono has had positive reviews and reports of decreased symptom severity. Developments are being made to adapt Ambulosono into other modalities to assist in treatment of a wider range of dysfunctions in PD

Implications: This project demonstrates not only the feasibility, but success of a music based biofeedback system for motor deficit treatment. The Ambulosono is easy to instal on an I-Pod for widespread distribution and data collection. It has also received the attention of MacLean’s Magazine as well as the Michael J. Fox Foundation based on its success and ingenuity.