Pilot Multi-center Evaluations of Reflex and Nonreflex changes in Cerebral Palsy Using a Portable Device (2014)

We must fully understand cerebral palsy (CP) symptoms to treat the disorder. Spastic hypertonia, a muscle impairment, prevents individuals from experiencing normal life. But it cannot be quantitatively evaluated for treatment. This grant develops a device that can measure the effects of spastic hypertonia. This pilot study involved using a portable device to evaluate reflex and non-reflex changes in patients with cerebral palsy.

Initial Observations

  • Individuals with CP often experience muscle spasms, stiffness, involuntary straightening or contractions, a condition known as spastic hypertonia.
  • Spastic hypertonia impairs normal muscle function in individuals with CP.
  • Spasticity hypertonia probably has both muscle and nerve components, but neither can be measured yet.

Core Questions

  • Can we develop a tool to accurately measure nerve and muscle properties?
  • Will this tool help us quantify the properties of spastic hypertonia?

Research Team

Dr. Li-Qun Zhang PhD, Dr. Mauricio Delgado MD, Dr. Deborah Gaebler-Spira MD, Dr. Mark Hallet MD, Dr. Yi-Ning Wu PhD