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1988 | 39 | 1 |
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Computer simulation study of the shape of motor unit action potential

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Piotrkiewicz, M.: Computer simulation study of the shape of motor unit action potential. Acta physiol, pol., 1988, 39(1): 35-45. Motor unit action potentials (MUAPs) of brachial biceps were simulated. A simulated MUAP was obtained as a sum of single fibre action potentials (SFAPs) from all the muscle fibres of a motor unit (MU). The influence of the following factors on MUAP shape for different kinds of recording electrode was studied: fibre density, neuromuscular jitter, temporal dispersion and electrode displacements. The simulation confirms that typical MUAPs recorded with needle electrodes from muscles of low fibre density such as brachial biceps are usually triphasic. Increased fibre density produces MUAPs of more complex shape and higher amplitude. Normal neuromuscular jitter is responsible for the variability of shape of subsequent potentials from the same MU as well as for electromyographic shimmer. Pathologic (increased) jitter makes the shapes of subsequent potentials unrecognizable. The influence of temporal dispersion is interconnected with other factors but rather of minor importance. The simulation shows how big changes in MUAP shape can be expected due to electrode displacements during single experiment or during estimation of MU territory.
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  • Institute of Biocybernetics and Biomedical Engineering, Polish Academy of Sciences, Warsaw, Poland
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