Children with spastic hemiplegia are equally able as controls in maintaining a precise percentage of maximum force without visually monitoring their performance
until further notice
Number of pages
SourceNeuropsychologia, 43, 13, (2005), pp. 1938-1945
Article / Letter to editor
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SubjectAction, intention, and motor control
In this study the hypothesis was tested that children with spastic hemiplegia rely more on externally guided visual feedback when trying to keep force constant with their affected hand (AH) as compared to their non-affected hand (NAH) and as compared to controls. An isometric force task in which a cursor had to be moved to a visually specified target that disappeared half way the task, was performed by 19 children with cerebral palsy (CP), spastic hemiplegia, aged between 5 and 16 years and an aged matched control group. It was found that the absolute deterioration of performance after withdrawal of target visualization did differ between AH, NAH and controls. The absolute error was smaller and the variability was larger in the hemiplegic hand. However, the normalized force error and co-efficient of variation increased similarly between groups. Furthermore, power spectrum density analysis of the force signal showed that both hands in both groups had a similar loss in the energy in the 2–3 Hz range when target visualization was removed. These results suggest that CP children are equally able to produce stable force without visually monitoring their performance than children without CP, provided they are allowed to operate within their own force range.
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