The relationship between the flexion synergy and stretch reflexes in individuals with chronic hemiparetic stroke

Jacob G. McPherson*, Arno H.A. Stienen, Justin M. Drogos, Julius P.A. Dewald

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

9 Scopus citations

Abstract

This study utilized a novel robotic device, the ACT-4D, to investigate the relationship between the flexion synergy and stretch reflexes in individuals with chronic hemiparetic stroke. Because the flexion synergy influences the amount of elbow flexor muscle activation present in the paretic limb during tasks requiring shoulder abduction loading, it was hypothesized that stretch reflexes may be modulated by expression of this abnormal muscle coactivation pattern. To test this hypothesis, the ACT-4D was used to enable 10 individuals with chronic hemiparetic stroke to generate varying amounts of shoulder abduction torque while concurrently receiving elbow extension position perturbations. It was found that increased expression of the flexion synergy led to greater reflex amplitudes as well as lower reflex velocity thresholds. The physiological basis of the flexion synergy is briefly discussed, as are the implications of the flexion synergy and stretch reflexes for purposeful movement.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publication2011 IEEE International Conference on Rehabilitation Robotics, ICORR 2011 - Rehab Week Zurich 2011
DOIs
StatePublished - 2011
EventRehab Week Zurich 2011 - 2011 IEEE International Conference on Rehabilitation Robotics, ICORR 2011 - Zurich, Switzerland
Duration: Jun 27 2011Jul 1 2011

Publication series

NameIEEE International Conference on Rehabilitation Robotics
ISSN (Print)1945-7898
ISSN (Electronic)1945-7901

Other

OtherRehab Week Zurich 2011 - 2011 IEEE International Conference on Rehabilitation Robotics, ICORR 2011
CountrySwitzerland
CityZurich
Period6/27/117/1/11

Keywords

  • chronic hemiparetic stroke
  • flexion synergy
  • robotics
  • stretch reflex

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Control and Systems Engineering
  • Rehabilitation
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering

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