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Annals of Biomedical Engineering

, Volume 18, Issue 5, pp 479–490 | Cite as

Human skeletal muscle: Phasic type of electrical stimulation increases its contractile speed

  • Renata Karba
  • Aneta Stefanovska
  • Srđan Đorđević
Article

Abstract

Skeletal muscles, exposed to a prolonged period of specific functional demands, respond adaptively. Electrical stimulation, when employed as a technique for subjecting selected muscles to altered use, enables precise entrainment of the pattern of functional activity. In this investigation, the vastus lateralis muscle in a group of volunteers was stimulated. The stimulation program typical of a phasic type of activity (high frequency, high current amplitude, short pulse duration) intermittently subjected the stimulated muscles to brief periods of intense activity, followed by relatively long pauses. The activation-relaxation time ratio chosen was 1 to 13. It was determined to prevent the muscles from fatiguing. The effects of the chronic stimulation program were established by measurements of the time course of contraction and relaxation and fatigue of the vastus lateralis muscle. Chronic phasic electrical stimulation increased the speed of muscle contraction by 15% while the fatigue characteristics remained unchanged.

Keywords

Electric stimulation Skeletal muscle Contractile speed Muscle fatigue Phasic activity 

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Copyright information

© Pergamon Press plc 1990

Authors and Affiliations

  • Renata Karba
    • 1
  • Aneta Stefanovska
    • 1
  • Srđan Đorđević
    • 2
  1. 1.Faculty of Electrical and Computer EngineeringE. Kardelj UniversityLjubljanaYugoslavia
  2. 2.Department of BiologyE. Kardelj UniversityLjubljanaYugoslavia

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