Passive joint range of motion in stroke: Are we measuring the right thing?

Summary

This is an exciting postgraduate research opportunity to investigate to what extent unwanted muscle activity affects measures of joint range of motion after stroke. The findings from this research hold broad implications for understanding the mechanisms of contracture and rehabilitation after stroke.


Supervisor(s)

Dr Joanna Diong

Research Location

Cumberland - School of Medical Sciences

Program Type

Masters/PHD

Synopsis

More than half of all people who have a stroke will lose range of motion in at least one joint within six months. Contracture is the loss of passive joint range of motion, and is a common problem after stroke. Nearly all studies on contracture measure joint range of motion assuming that muscles around the joint are relaxed. Pilot data from our laboratory show that this assumption does not hold in some people with stroke.

An exciting PhD opportunity is available to investigate to what extent unwanted muscle activity (EMG) affects measures of passive joint range of motion in people with stroke compared to healthy people. This research will determine how valid clinical measures of joint range of motion are, and quantify how much muscle activity is needed to affect joint angle measures. The findings from this research hold broad implications for rehabilitation after stroke and other neurological conditions.

Additional Information

This project would suit a student with an undergraduate degree and Honours in health science, human movement, medical science, physiology, anatomy or a related discipline. Postgraduate students receive up to $5000 allowance per annum to support research costs.

This project will be carried out at University of Sydney and Neuroscience Research Australia (NeuRA)

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Keywords

Stroke, neurology, EMG, muscle activity, kinematics, kinetics, angle, torque, outcome measures, validity, contracture, spasticity, dystonia

Opportunity ID

The opportunity ID for this research opportunity is: 1980

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