Hoehn and Yahr scale

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The Hoehn and Yahr scale is a commonly used system for describing how the symptoms of Parkinson's disease progress. It was originally published in 1967 in the journal Neurology by Margaret Hoehn and Melvin Yahr and included stages 1 through 5.[1] Since then, a modified Hoehn and Yahr scale was proposed with the addition of stages 1.5 and 2.5 to help describe the intermediate course of the disease.[2] It has been shown that HY stage discrimination can be automated, even with patients who cannot support themselves.[3]

Stage Hoehn and Yahr Scale Modified Hoehn and Yahr Scale
1 Unilateral involvement only usually with minimal or no functional disability Unilateral involvement only
1.5 - Unilateral and axial involvement
2 Bilateral or midline involvement without impairment of balance Bilateral involvement without impairment of balance
2.5 - Mild bilateral disease with recovery on pull test
3 Bilateral disease: mild to moderate disability with impaired postural reflexes; physically independent Mild to moderate bilateral disease; some postural instability; physically independent
4 Severely disabling disease; still able to walk or stand unassisted Severe disability; still able to walk or stand unassisted
5 Confinement to bed or wheelchair unless aided Wheelchair bound or bedridden unless aided

This rating system has been largely supplanted by the Unified Parkinson's Disease Rating Scale, which assesses limitation of daily activities and non-motor symptoms in more detail.[2]

Time between stages[edit]

A 2010 study of 695 patients (mean age: 65.2, male: 57.3%) found the median time taken to transit H&Y stages as shown below:[4]

Stage Median Time to Transit (Months)
1 -
2 20
2.5 62
3 25
4 24
5 26


  1. ^ Hoehn M, Yahr M (1967). "Parkinsonism: onset, progression and mortality". Neurology. 17 (5): 427–42. doi:10.1212/wnl.17.5.427. PMID 6067254.
  2. ^ a b Goetz CG, Poewe W, Rascol O, Sampaio C, Stebbins GT, Counsell C, Giladi N, Holloway RG, Moore CG, Wenning GK, Yahr MD, Seidl L (2004). "Movement Disorder Society Task Force Report on the Hoehn and Yahr Staging Scale: Status and Recommendations. The Movement Disorder Society Task Force on Rating Scales for Parkinson's Disease". Movement Disorders. 19 (9): 1020–1028. doi:10.1002/mds.20213. PMID 15372591. S2CID 42266048.
  3. ^ Aharonson V, Seedat N, Israeli-Korn S, Hassin-Baer S, Postema M, Yahalom G (2020). "Automated stage discrimination of Parkinson's disease". BIO Integration. 1 (2): 55–63. doi:10.15212/bioi-2020-0006.
  4. ^ Zhao YJ, Wee HL, Chan YH, Seah SH, Au WL, Lau PN, Pica EC, Li SC, Luo N, Tan LC (2010). "Progression of Parkinson's disease as evaluated by Hoehn and Yahr stage transition times". Mov Disord. 25 (6): 710–716. doi:10.1002/mds.22875. PMID 20213822. S2CID 23544830.