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Influence of Electrical Stimulation of the Tibialis Anterior Muscle in Paraplegic Subjects. 1: Contractile Properties

Lookup NU author(s): Professor Lynn Rochester


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In adult paraplegic subjects one tibialis anterior muscle received daily electrical stimulation for 4 weeks at twice motor threshold to determine changes of its contractile properties (this paper) and its morphological and histochemical profiles (following paper).(1) Force, speed of contraction and fatigue resistance were assessed by percutaneous electrical stimulation of the muscle with torque measured about the ankle. Comparative contractile tests were performed on 51 normal adult subjects and new parameters for force measurement proposed, particularly where maximum voluntary contraction cannot be obtained. In paraplegic subjects before stimulation the tibialis anterior muscle showed evidence of disuse with decreased force, faster contraction and relaxation, and reduced fatigue resistance. The effects of two stimulus patterns were compared: 10 Hz, and 10 Hz with 100 Hz bursts. After stimulation contraction was slower, fatigue resistance increased and there was a tendency for force to increase. No differences occurred using the different stimulus patterns. Four weeks later fatigue resistance was partially maintained, while speed of contraction reverted to pre-stimulus levels.

Publication metadata

Author(s): Rochester L, Chandler CS, Johnson MA, Sutton RA, Miller S

Publication type: Article

Publication status: Published

Journal: Paraplegia

Year: 1995

Volume: 33

Issue: 8

Pages: 437-449

Print publication date: 01/08/1995

ISSN (print): 0031-1758

ISSN (electronic):

Publisher: Nature Publishing Group