Chou L-W, Lee SC, Johnston TE, Binder-Macleod SA. The effectiveness of progressively increasing stimulation frequency and intensity to maintain paralyzed muscle force during repetitive activation in persons with spinal cord injury. Objective: To compare the effectiveness of progressively increasing stimulation intensity, progressively increasing frequency, or progressively increasing both frequency and intensity on paralyzed quadriceps femoris muscle force maintenance during repetitive activation. Design: Factorial design with different stimulation protocols as independent variables. Setting: A muscle performance laboratory. Participants: People (N=8) with spinal cord injury (SCI) (age, 14.63±1.77y). Interventions: Not applicable. Main Outcome Measure: Number of contractions when the peak force was 90% or more of a subject's maximal twitch force. Results: The protocol involving progressively increasing stimulation intensity and then frequency generated more successful contractions (189.88±53.33) than progressively increasing the frequency followed by intensity (122.75±26.56 contractions). Regardless of the order, progressively increasing both intensity and frequency generated more successful contractions than progressively increasing intensity (97 contractions) or frequency (62 contractions) alone. Conclusions: Our findings suggest that during repetitive electric activation, progressively increasing both stimulation frequency and intensity can produce more successful contractions than progressively increasing only frequency or intensity. These findings can help researchers and clinicians design more effective stimulation protocols for persons with SCI during functional electric stimulation applications.
- Electric stimulation
- Spinal cord injuries