Modulation of spasticity: prolonged suppression of a spinal reflex by electrical stimulation

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Science  09 Apr 1982:
Vol. 216, Issue 4542, pp. 203-204
DOI: 10.1126/science.7063882


Electrical subcutaneous nerve stimulation of radial, median, and saphenous nerves has been shown to produce prolonged analgesia. In a double blind study, such stimulation also suppressed clonus for 3 hours after stimulation ceased in subjects with spasticity. Since the effect is contralateral, each subject was his own control. Because stimulation of the nerve in the wrist suppressed ankle clonus, the mechanism mediating the effect must be centrifugal inhibition. These results suggest that subcutaneous nerve stimulation may also be a tool in the management of spasticity.