Fractionated premotor, motor, and ankle dorsiflexion reaction times in hemiplegia

Leon E. Smith, Peter P. Tarjan, Walter G. Besio, Shihab S. Asfour

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

8 Scopus citations


Ten hemiplegic subjects completed 20 rapid dorsiflexions of their afflicted and nonafflicted limbs. Electrodes were attached to the tibialis anterior and the gastrocnemius muscles and electromyograms were recorded for their premotor time, motor time, and simple reaction time during ankle dorsiflexion and plantar flexion of their lower limbs. The fractionated components of reaction time, namely, premotor time and motor time, of both legs were statistically compared. It was found that the premotor time of the subject's stroke-affected limb was significantly slower than the premotor time of the nonaffected limb (control), with no differences between their associated mean motor times. These results supported the hypothesis that a stroke has a deleterious affect upon the central, premotor time processing centers and has no disruptive influence upon the peripheral motor time. Comparing the fractionated components of reaction time (premotor time and motor time), with simple reaction time, the former provided a more sensitive and valid method to detect possible injurious side effects of a stroke upon the brain's neuromotor transmission centers and subcenters, and their peripheral, stimulus, response network.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)955-964
Number of pages10
JournalPerceptual and motor skills
Issue number3 PART 1
StatePublished - Jun 1998

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Experimental and Cognitive Psychology
  • Sensory Systems


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