Corticospinal excitability of trunk muscles in anticipatory postural adjustments.

Rowland, Rebecca Sophie (2020). Corticospinal excitability of trunk muscles in anticipatory postural adjustments. University of Birmingham. M.Sc.

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Objective: To investigate corticospinal excitability of trunk muscles during anticipatory postural adjustments (APAs) prior to a fast shoulder flexion task in an elderly and young cohort.

Methods: Twenty young healthy (20.3 ± 1.4 years) and 20 elderly adults (75.5 ± 4.8 years) completed questionnaires, balance and neurophysiological assessments. Participants underwent balance tasks on a force plate, which recorded their centre of pressure displacement. A recognition reaction time (RRT) paradigm was used where participants responded to a visual stimulus by flexing their shoulders bilaterally as fast as they could. Activity of bilateral anterior deltoid (AD) and erector spinae (ES) muscles were recorded using electromyography (EMG). Onset of AD and ES EMG was measured to represent RRT and APAs, respectively. Transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) was used to assess corticospinal excitability of the ES prior to the shoulder flexion task. Maximal voluntary contraction (MVC) of the ES was measured.

Results: The amplitude of ES motor evoked potentials (MEPs) was greater at 40ms than 50ms, and at 30ms than 40ms, prior to the onset of AD EMG in both cohorts. ES MEP amplitude at 40ms prior to the onset of AD EMG correlated with the onset of ES EMG in the elderly cohort only. A higher percentage of elderly individuals had delayed APA (75%) compared to young. Elderly participants showed greater postural sway during balance tasks.

Conclusions: Our findings outline the corticospinal excitability profile of trunk muscles during APAs in older adults, and suggest older adults have greater motor cortical involvement in APA function.

Type of Work: Thesis (Masters by Research > M.Sc.)
Award Type: Masters by Research > M.Sc.
Licence: All rights reserved
College/Faculty: Colleges (2008 onwards) > College of Life & Environmental Sciences
School or Department: School of Sport, Exercise and Rehabilitation Sciences
Funders: Other
Other Funders: University lectureship start-up
Subjects: Q Science > QP Physiology


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