Quantifying muscle activity in non-ambulatory children with spastic cerebral palsy before and after selective dorsal rhizotomy

Julie E. Perry, Brian L. Davis, Mark G. Luciano

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Cerebral palsy is a condition that results in varying degrees of functional deficits. The goal of this study was to develop an objective measure of muscle activity during a prescribed voluntary motor task in non-ambulatory children with spastic cerebral palsy. While performing a simultaneous hip/knee flexion task from the supine position, followed by return to the starting position, electromyographic and kinematic data were obtained from the right leg of eight children before and after selective dorsal rhizotomy and compared with eight age-matched controls. The electromyographic and kinematic data were combined to determine for each muscle of interest (tibialis anterior, soleus, vastus lateralis, biceps femoris) the percentage of the movement cycle for which the muscle was acting concentrically, eccentrically, isometrically or was considered inactive. Averaged over the four muscles, isometric activity decreased by 38% post-op and the time the muscles were inactive increased by 37% following surgery. The percentages of concentric and eccentric activity did not differ significantly between pre- and post-op conditions. Post-operatively, the percentage muscle activity patterns of the children with cerebral palsy more closely resembled that of the control children: averaged across all muscles and contraction types, the difference between the control children and the children with cerebral palsy was reduced by 50% following surgery. This measurement technique indicates promise as a method for quantifying muscle activity during voluntary motor tasks in non-ambulatory children with cerebral palsy.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)31-37
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Electromyography and Kinesiology
Volume11
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Feb 10 2001
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • Cerebral palsy
  • Electromyography
  • Motion analysis
  • Rhizotomy
  • Spasticity

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neuroscience (miscellaneous)
  • Biophysics
  • Clinical Neurology

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