Relationship between spasticity and spinal neural circuits in patients with chronic hemiparetic stroke

Kohei Okuyama, Michiyuki Kawakami, Miho Hiramoto, Kaori Muraoka, Toshiyuki Fujiwara, Meigen Liu

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

9 Citations (Scopus)


Spasticity is a common problem in patients with stroke that contributes to motor dysfunction. However, the pathophysiological mechanisms underlying spasticity are not fully understood. The purpose of the present study was to explain the relationship between features of spinal neural circuits assessed using electrophysiological techniques and the clinical manifestations of stroke. The participants were 71 patients with chronic hemiparetic stroke. To assess spinal neural circuits, Hmax/Mmax of the forearm flexor muscles and reciprocal inhibition (RI) between forearm extensor and flexor muscles with the H reflex conditioning-test paradigm were measured. The relationships between electrophysiological parameters and clinical variables (age, time from stroke onset, upper extremity functional scores, and spasticity) were then analyzed. It was found that the third phase of RI (RI-3) correlated with the modified Ashworth scores of the wrist and finger flexors. No other correlations were found between electrophysiological and clinical measures. These results suggest that RI-3 is associated with spasticity and may be helpful to understand the basis of post-stroke spasticity.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)207-213
Number of pages7
JournalExperimental Brain Research
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2018 Jan 1


  • Cerebrovascular disease
  • H-reflex
  • Hemiparesis
  • Muscle tone
  • Reciprocal inhibition

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Neuroscience


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