Quantitative Estimation of Muscle Shear Elastic Modulus of the Upper Trapezius With Supersonic Shear Imaging During Arm Positioning.

Quantitative Estimation of Muscle Shear Elastic Modulus of the Upper Trapezius with Supersonic Shear Imaging during Arm Positioning.

PLoS One. 2013; 8(6): e67199
Leong HT, Ng GY, Leung VY, Fu SN

Pain and tenderness of the upper trapezius are the major complaints among people with chronic neck and shoulder disorders. Hyper-activation and increased muscle tension of the upper trapezius during arm elevation will cause imbalance of the scapular muscle force and contribute to neck and shoulder disorders. Assessing the elasticity of the upper trapezius in different arm positions is therefore important for identifying people at risk so as to give preventive programmes or for monitoring the effectiveness of the intervention programmes for these disorders. This study aimed to establish the reliability of supersonic shear imaging (SSI) in quantifying upper trapezius elasticity/shear elastic modulus and its ability to measure the modulation of muscle elasticity during arm elevation. Twenty-eight healthy adults (15 males, 13 females; mean age?=?29.6 years) were recruited to participate in the study. In each participant, the shear elastic modulus of the upper trapezius while the arm was at rest and at 30° abduction was measured by two operators and twice by operator 1 with a time interval between the measurements. The results showed excellent within- and between-session intra-operator (ICC?=?0.87-0.97) and inter-observer (ICC?=?0.78-0.83) reliability for the upper trapezius elasticity with the arm at rest and at 30° abduction. An increase of 55.23% of shear elastic modulus from resting to 30° abduction was observed. Our findings demonstrate the possibilities for using SSI to quantify muscle elasticity and its potential role in delineating the modulation of upper trapezius elasticity, which is essential for future studies to compare the differences in shear elastic modulus between normal elasticity and that of individuals with neck and shoulder disorders. HubMed – rehab


Understanding the Relationship between Type 2 Diabetes Mellitus and Falls in Older Adults: A Prospective Cohort Study.

PLoS One. 2013; 8(6): e67055
Roman de Mettelinge T, Cambier D, Calders P, Van Den Noortgate N, Delbaere K

Older adults with type 2 Diabetes Mellitus are at increased risk of falling. The current study aims to identify risk factors that mediate the relationship between diabetes and falls.199 older adults (104 with diabetes and 95 healthy controls) underwent a medical screening. Gait (GAITRite®), balance (AccuGait® force plate), grip strength (Jamar®), and cognitive status (Mini-Mental State Examination and Clock Drawing Test) were assessed. Falls were prospectively recorded during a 12-month follow-up period using monthly calendars.Compared to controls, diabetes participants scored worse on all physical and cognitive measures. Sixty-four participants (42 diabetes vs. 22 controls) reported at least one injurious fall or two non-injurious falls (“fallers”). Univariate logistic regression identified diabetes as a risk factor for future falls (Odds Ratio 2.25, 95%CI 1.21-4.15, p?=?0.010). Stepwise multiple regressions defined diabetes and poor balance as independent risk factors for falling. Taking more medications, slower walking speed, shorter stride length and poor cognitive performance were mediators that reduced the Odds Ratio of the relationship between diabetes and faller status relationship the most followed by reduced grip strength and increased stride length variability.Diabetes is a major risk factor for falling, even after controlling for poor balance. Taking more medications, poorer walking performance and reduced cognitive functioning were mediators of the relationship between diabetes and falls. Tailored preventive programs including systematic medication reviews, specific balance exercises and cognitive training might be beneficial in reducing fall risk in older adults suffering from diabetes. HubMed – rehab


Patterned Brain Stimulation, What a Framework with Rhythmic and Noisy Components Might Tell Us about Recovery Maximization.

Front Hum Neurosci. 2013; 7: 325
Schmidt S, Scholz M, Obermayer K, Brandt SA

Brain stimulation is having remarkable impact on clinical neurology. Brain stimulation can modulate neuronal activity in functionally segregated circumscribed regions of the human brain. Polarity, frequency, and noise specific stimulation can induce specific manipulations on neural activity. In contrast to neocortical stimulation, deep-brain stimulation has become a tool that can dramatically improve the impact clinicians can possibly have on movement disorders. In contrast, neocortical brain stimulation is proving to be remarkably susceptible to intrinsic brain-states. Although evidence is accumulating that brain stimulation can facilitate recovery processes in patients with cerebral stroke, the high variability of results impedes successful clinical implementation. Interestingly, recent data in healthy subjects suggests that brain-state dependent patterned stimulation might help resolve some of the intrinsic variability found in previous studies. In parallel, other studies suggest that noisy “stochastic resonance” (SR)-like processes are a non-negligible component in non-invasive brain stimulation studies. The hypothesis developed in this manuscript is that stimulation patterning with noisy and oscillatory components will help patients recover from stroke related deficits more reliably. To address this hypothesis we focus on two factors common to both neural computation (intrinsic variables) as well as brain stimulation (extrinsic variables): noise and oscillation. We review diverse theoretical and experimental evidence that demonstrates that subject-function specific brain-states are associated with specific oscillatory activity patterns. These states are transient and can be maintained by noisy processes. The resulting control procedures can resemble homeostatic or SR processes. In this context we try to extend awareness for inter-individual differences and the use of individualized stimulation in the recovery maximization of stroke patients. HubMed – rehab


Evidence for reticulospinal contributions to coordinated finger movements in humans.

J Neurophysiol. 2013 Jul 3;
Honeycutt CF, Kharouta M, Perreault EJ

The reticulospinal tract was recently shown to have synaptic connections to the intrinsic muscles of the fingers in non-human primates, indicating it may contribute to hand function long thought to be controlled exclusively through corticospinal pathways. Our objective was to obtain evidence supporting the hypothesis that these same anatomical connections exist in humans. StartReact, an involuntary release of a planned movement via the startle reflex, provides a non-invasive means to examine the reticulospinal tract in humans. We found that startReact was triggered during coordinated grasp but not individuated finger movements. This result suggests that the reticulospinal tract does have connections to the intrinsic muscles of the fingers in humans but its functional role is limited to coordinated movement of the whole hand. These results do not diminish the well-established role of corticospinal pathways in the control of hand movement. Indeed, they cement the significance of corticospinal pathways in individuated finger movement control. Still, these results point to an updated and expanded view of distal hand control where reticulospinal and corticospinal pathways work in parallel to generate a large repertoire of diverse, coordinated movement in the hand. Finally, the presence of reticulospinal pathways to the muscles of the hand makes this pathway an attractive therapeutic target for clinical populations where the corticospinal tract is absent or injured. HubMed – rehab



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