ABSTRACT: Little is known regarding the differences in active cortical and subcortical systems during opposing movements of an agonist-antagonist muscle group. The objective of this study was to characterize the differences in cortical activation during active ankle dorsiflexion and plantarflexion using functional MRI (fMRI). Eight right-handed healthy adults performed auditorily cued right ankle dorsiflexions and plantarflexions during fMRI. Differences in activity patterns between dorsiflexion and plantarflexion during fMRI were assessed using between- and within-subject voxel-wise t-tests. Results indicated that ankle dorsiflexion recruited significantly more regions in left M1, the supplementary motor area (SMA) bilaterally, and right cerebellum. Both movements activated similar left hemisphere regions in the putamen and thalamus. Dorsiflexion activated additional areas in the right putamen. Results suggest that ankle dorsiflexion and plantarflexion may be controlled by both shared and independent neural circuitry. This has important implications for functional investigations of gait pathology and how rehabilitation may differentially affect each movement.
Brain Imaging and Behavior 06/2010; 4(2):121-31. · 1.66 Impact Factor
ABSTRACT: Spasticity after spinal cord injury (SCI) is commonly managed with oral and intrathecal baclofen (ITB), with less attention to the effects on voluntary motor control. Studies combining clinical and neurophysiologic assessments during dose optimization are rare. Study aims (a) systematically evaluate effects of varied doses of oral and ITB on clinical and neurophysiologic measures of strength and spasticity and (b) relate clinical and neurophysiologic findings.
A 41-year-old man with an incomplete T11-ASIA D SCI was studied during ITB titration. Spasticity and strength in the lower extremities were assessed clinically and neurophysiologically at 5 different daily dosages of baclofen: (a) 80 mg oral, (b) 80 mg oral/50 microg ITB, (c) 80 mg oral/125 microg ITB, (d) 30 mg oral/125 microg ITB, and (e) 125 microg ITB only.
A dose-dependent change in the Ashworth score and lower limb motor score was observed during titration of oral and ITB. Whereas the Hoffman (H)-reflex was abolished after the introduction of ITB, the flexion withdrawal reflex approximated a dose-dependent pattern. Changes in the motor score and EMG during voluntary muscle activation were proportionally smaller than the corresponding changes in clinical and neurophysiologic measures of spasticity. Neurophysiologic assessment largely paralleled clinical findings.
This single-subject study shows that the control of spasticity can be achieved without detrimental effects on strength in incomplete SCI and suggests the need for including strength testing in comprehensive clinical assessment of spasticity. The study shows convergent validity between clinical and neurophysiologic assessments during ITB dose titration. Adding neurophysiologic assessment to clinical assessment may provide objectivity and sensitivity and facilitate decision-making during ITB titration.
The journal of spinal cord medicine 02/2009; 32(2):183-90. · 2.11 Impact Factor
ABSTRACT: To determine whether 9 weeks of locomotor training (LT) results in changes in muscle strength and alterations in muscle size and activation after chronic incomplete spinal cord injury (SCI).
Longitudinal prospective case series.
Five individuals with chronic incomplete SCI completed 9 weeks of LT. Peak isometric torque, torque developed within the initial 200 milliseconds of contraction (Torque 200), average rate of torque development (ARTD), and voluntary activation deficits were determined using isokinetic dynamometry for the knee-extensor (KE) and plantar-flexor (PF) muscle groups before and after LT. Maximum muscle cross-sectional area (CSA) was measured prior to and after LT.
Locomotor training resulted in improved peak torque production in all participants, with the largest increases in the more-involved PF (43.9% +/- 20.0%), followed by the more-involved KE (21.1% +/- 12.3%). Even larger improvements were realized in Torque 200 and ARTD (indices of explosive torque), after LT. In particular, the largest improvements were realized in the Torque 200 measures of the PF muscle group. Improvements in torque production were associated with enhanced voluntary activation in both the KE and ankle PF muscles and an increase in the maximal CSA of the ankle PF muscles.
Nine weeks of LT resulted in positive alterations in the KE and PF muscle groups that included an increase in muscle size, improved voluntary activation, and an improved ability to generate both peak and explosive torque about the knee and ankle joints.
The journal of spinal cord medicine 02/2008; 31(2):185-93. · 2.11 Impact Factor
ABSTRACT: (1) To quantify skeletal muscle size in lower-extremity muscles of people after incomplete spinal cord injury (SCI), (2) to assess differences in muscle size between involved lower limbs, (3) to determine the impact of ambulatory status (using wheelchair for community mobility vs not using a wheelchair for community mobility) on muscle size after incomplete SCI, and (4) to determine if differential atrophy occurs among individual muscles after incomplete SCI.
University research setting.
Seventeen people with incomplete SCI and 17 age-, sex-, weight-, and height-matched noninjured controls.
Maximum cross-sectional area (CSA) of individual lower-extremity muscles (soleus, medial gastrocnemius, lateral gastrocnemius, tibialis anterior, quadriceps femoris, hamstrings) as assessed by magnetic resonance imaging.
Overall, subjects with incomplete SCI had significantly smaller (24%-31%) average muscle CSA in affected lower-extremity muscles as compared with control subjects (P<.05). Mean differences were highest in the thigh muscles ( approximately 31%) compared with the lower-leg muscles ( approximately 25%). No differences were noted between the self-reported more- and less-involved limbs within the incomplete SCI group. Dichotomizing the incomplete SCI group showed significantly lower muscle CSA values in both the wheelchair (range, 21%-39%) and nonwheelchair groups (range, 24%-38%). In addition, the wheelchair group exhibited significantly greater plantarflexor muscle atrophy compared with the dorsiflexors, with maximum atrophy in the medial gastrocnemius muscle (39%).
Our results suggest marked and differential atrophic response of the affected lower-extremity muscles that is seemingly affected by ambulatory status in people with incomplete SCI.
Archives of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation 06/2006; 87(6):772-8. · 2.28 Impact Factor
Physical Therapy Reviews 01/2006; 11:143-152.