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Nerve cuff recordings of muscle afferent activity from tibial and peroneal nerves in rabbit during passive ankle motion

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4 Author(s)
Riso, R.R. ; Center for Sensory-Motor Interaction, Aalborg Univ., Denmark ; Mosallaie, F.K. ; Jensen, W. ; Sinkjaer, T.

Activity from muscle afferents regarding ankle kinesthesia was recorded using cuff electrodes in a rabbit preparation in which tactile input from the foot was eliminated. The purpose was to determine if such activity can provide information useful in controlling functional electrical stimulation (FES) systems that restore mobility in spinal injured man. The rabbit's ankle was passively flexed and extended while the activity of the tibial and peroneal nerves was recorded. Responses to trapezoidal stimulus profiles were investigated for excursions from 100 to 600 using velocities from 50/s to 300/s and different initial ankle positions. The recorded signals mainly reflect activity from primary and secondary muscle afferents. Dorsiflexion stretched the ankle extensors and produced velocity dependent activity in the tibial nerve, and this diminished to a tonic level during the stimulus plateau. The peroneal nerve was silent during dorsiflexion, but was activated by stretch of the peroneal muscles during ankle extension. The responses of the two nerves behaved in a reciprocal manner, hut exhibited considerable hysteresis, since motion that relaxed the stretch to the driving muscle produced an immediate cessation of the prior stretch induced activity. A noted difference between the tibial and peroneal nerve responses is that the range of joint position change that activated the flexor afferents was greater then for the extensor afferents. Ankle rotation at higher velocities increased the dynamic stretch evoked responses during the stimulus ramp but showed no effect on the tonic activity during the stimulus plateau. Prestretching the muscles by altering the initial position increased the response to the ramp movement, however, for the peroneal nerve, when the prestretch brought the flexor muscles near to their maximal lengths, the response to additional stretch provided by the ramp movement was diminished. The results indicate that the whole nerve recorded muscle afferent activity may be useful for control of FES assisted standing, because it can indicate the direction of rotation of the passively moved ankle joint, along with coarse information regarding the rate of movement and static joint position

Published in:

Rehabilitation Engineering, IEEE Transactions on  (Volume:8 ,  Issue: 2 )

Date of Publication:

Jun 2000

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