Force assessment of the stimulated arm flexors: Quantification of contractile properties

J. B. Hong, P. A. Iaizzo

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The primary objective was to develop equipment and evaluate protocols for non-invasive assessment of contractile properties of human arm flexors. The research design consisted of a non-randomized control trial, with repeated measures. Data from six males and two females were gathered in a clinical research laboratory. The elbow flexor torque following motor point or direct nerve stimulation was measured in response to single pulses or short trains of electrical pulses. Length-tension relationships were determined; comparative data were obtained at the identified optimal muscle lengths. Twitch waveforms and peak torques following either type of stimulation were reproducible (within 10%). Peak torques following a 4-pulse small interpulse interval stimulation were nearly identical for motor-point activation and direct nerve stimulation (15.2±6.6 Nm for motor point stimulation; 14.5±6.6Nm for nerve stimulation). Average perceived pain indexes associated with 4-pulse stimuli were slightly higher following nerve stimulation (7.82 for nerve versus 6.23 for motor-point, n=8). A reliable methodology (motor-point stimulation) has been identified to perform stimulated force assessment of human arm flexors.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)28-35
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Medical Engineering and Technology
Issue number1
StatePublished - Apr 3 2002

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