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J Electromyogr Kinesiol. 2012 Dec;22(6):939-46. doi: 10.1016/j.jelekin.2012.05.007. Epub 2012 Jun 26.

Muscle activation of patients suffering from asymmetric ankle osteoarthritis during isometric contractions and level walking - a time-frequency analysis.

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Orthopaedic Department, University Hospital, University of Basel, Switzerland.


Asymmetric osteoarthritis (OA) is a common type of OA in the ankle joint. OA also influences the muscles surrounding a joint, however, little is known about the muscle activation in asymmetric ankle OA. Therefore, the aim of this study was to characterize the patients' muscle activation during isometric ankle torque measurements and level walking. Surface electromyography (EMG) was measured of gastrocnemius medialis (GM) and lateralis (GL), soleus (SO), tibialis anterior (TA), and peroneus longus (PL) in 12 healthy subjects and 12 ankle OA patients. To obtain time and frequency components of the EMG power a wavelet transformation was performed. Furthermore, entropy was introduced to characterize the homogeneity of the wavelet patterns. Patients produced lower plantar- and dorsiflexion torques and their TA wavelet spectrum was shifted towards lower frequencies. While walking, the patients' muscles were active with a lower intensity and over a broader time-frequency region. In contrast to controls and varus OA patients, maximal GM activity of valgus OA patients lagged behind the activity of GL and SO. In both tasks, PL of the valgus patients contained more low frequency power. The results of this study will help to assess whether surgical interventions of ankle OA can reestablish the muscle activation patterns.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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