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Keywords:

  • Spasmodic torticollis rating scale;
  • Teaching tape

Abstract

The Toronto Western Spasmodic Torticollis Rating Scale (TWSTRS) assesses the character and severity of cervical dystonia (CD). We developed a teaching tape of the TWSTRS scoring for the motor symptoms of CD. The tape provides investigators with visual representations of each component of the motor section of the TWSTRS as agreed upon by three independently scoring raters. The rate of agreement for the nondichotomous components was always significant, with a Kendall's coefficient of concordance W ranging between 0.98 and 0.76 (p < 0.01 for all measures). For the two dichotomous components, a weighted k coefficient was also significant at 0.86 for lateral shift and 0.89 for sagittal shift (p < 0.01 for both measures). Scale deficiencies identified by the raters were an explicit definition of midline for assessment of range of motion, the absence of a separate scoring category assessing dystonic tremor, and the specification of duration for the effect of sensory tricks. These observations should be taken into account in future revisions of the TWSTRS and in refinements of other rating scales for CD.