Image_1_Sarcolemmal Excitability, M-Wave Changes, and Conduction Velocity During a Sustained Low-Force Contraction.TIF (174.46 kB)
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posted on 15.10.2021, 04:39 by Javier Rodriguez-Falces, Nicolas Place

This study was undertaken to investigate whether sarcolemmal excitability is impaired during a sustained low-force contraction [10% maximal voluntary contraction (MVC)] by assessing muscle conduction velocity and also by analyzing separately the first and second phases of the muscle compound action potential (M wave). Twenty-one participants sustained an isometric knee extension of 10% MVC for 3min. M waves were evoked by supramaximal single shocks to the femoral nerve given at 10-s intervals. The amplitude, duration, and area of the first and second M-wave phases were computed. Muscle fiber conduction velocity, voluntary surface electromyographic (EMG), perceived effort, MVC force, peak twitch force, and temperature were also recorded. The main findings were: (1) During the sustained contraction, conduction velocity remained unchanged. (2) The amplitude of the M-wave first phase decreased for the first ~30s (−7%, p<0.05) and stabilized thereafter, whereas the second phase amplitude increased for the initial ~30s (+7%, p<0.05), before stabilizing. (3) Both duration and area decreased steeply during the first ~30s, and then more gradually for the rest of the contraction. (4) During the sustained contraction, perceived effort increased fivefold, whereas knee extension EMG increased by ~10%. (5) Maximal voluntary force and peak twitch force decreased (respectively, −9% and −10%, p<0.05) after the low-force contraction. Collectively, the present results indicate that sarcolemmal excitability is well preserved during a sustained 10% MVC task. A depression of the M-wave first phase during a low-force contraction can occur even in the absence of changes in membrane excitability. The development of fatigue during a low-force contraction can occur without alteration of membrane excitability.

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