A data mining methodology for predicting early stage Parkinson's disease using non-invasive, high-dimensional gait sensor data

Conrad Tucker, Yixiang Han, Harriet Black Nembhard, Wang Chien Lee, Mechelle Lewis, Nicholas Sterling, Xuemei Huang

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

10 Scopus citations


Parkinson's disease (PD) is the second most common neurological disorder after Alzheimer's disease. Key clinical features of PD are motor-related and are typically assessed by healthcare providers based on qualitative visual inspection of a patient's movement/gait/posture. More advanced diagnostic techniques such as computed tomography scans that measure brain function, can be cost prohibitive and may expose patients to radiation and other harmful effects. To mitigate these challenges, and open a pathway to remote patient-physician assessment, the authors of this work propose a data mining–driven methodology that uses low cost, non-invasive sensors to model and predict the presence (or lack therefore) of PD movement abnormalities and model clinical subtypes. The study presented here evaluates the discriminative ability of non-invasive hardware and data mining algorithms to classify PD cases and controls. A 10-fold cross-validation approach is used to compare several data mining algorithms in order to determine that which provides the most consistent results when varying the subject gait data. Next, the predictive accuracy of the data mining model is quantified by testing it against unseen data captured from a test pool of subjects. The proposed methodology demonstrates the feasibility of using non-invasive, low cost, hardware and data mining models to monitor the progression of gait features outside of the traditional healthcare facility, which may ultimately lead to earlier diagnosis of emerging neurological diseases.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)238-254
Number of pages17
JournalIIE Transactions on Healthcare Systems Engineering
Issue number4
StatePublished - Oct 2 2015


All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Safety, Risk, Reliability and Quality
  • Safety Research
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health

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