Home Research BCCN I Project Details D3 - EMG triggered muscle stimulation: Neuroplastic limits of functional improvement of chronic hemiparetic stroke patients
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D3 - EMG triggered muscle stimulation: Neuroplastic limits of functional improvement of chronic hemiparetic stroke patients

Walter Paulus, Theo Geisel, Lüder Mosler, Jens Frahm, and Jürgen Kaus

In severely affected hemiparetic stroke patients innervation of arm muscles may not be strong enough for purposeful movements. By detecting the rudimentary muscle innervation by surface EMG and simultaneously stimulating the same muscle (or by using EMG signals from the contralateral arm) distinctly better motor performance can be achieved (Bocker and Smolenski 2003, Cauraugh and Kim 2002, Chae 2003, Mokrusch 1997) by amplification of the agonist muscle power and simultaneous reduction of spasticity in the antagonist (Francisco et al. 1998). Otto Bock HealthCare has developed a new system with so far two EMG channels and four stimulation channels in combination with a visual computer based feed-back system. The latter is needed for patients with additional sensory impairment, where visual guidance of arm movements provides the only motion cue. The department of clinical neurophysiology can provide any modern stimulation and recording technique for patients recruited for this project. The Biomedical NMR group provides access to high-field MRI and novel methods such as functional brain mapping and nerve fiber tracking to identify residual functional motor areas and their connections in stroke patients. The Nonlinear Dynamics group hosts expertice in active data exploration based on adaptive control algorithms.

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