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The authors investigated anticipatory postural adjustments in persons with unilateral stroke using external perturbations. Nine individuals with stroke and five control subjects participated. The electromyographic activity of 16 leg and trunk muscles was recorded. The onsets of muscle activity during the anticipatory phase of postural control were analyzed. The individuals with stroke did not show an anticipatory activation of leg and trunk muscles on the affected side; instead, the muscle onsets were seen after the perturbation, during the balance restoration phase. However, an anticipatory activation of muscles on the unaffected side was seen in individuals with stroke, and it was observed earlier compared with healthy controls (p < .05). The individuals with stroke showed a distal to proximal order of anticipatory activation of muscles on the unaffected side. The outcome of the study provides a basis for future investigations regarding ways of improving balance control in people with stroke.
Curuk is with the PhD Program in Rehabilitation Sciences, College of Applied Health Sciences, University of Illinois at Chicago, Chicago, IL, USA. Lee is with the Dept. of Physical Therapy and School of Engineering, Grand Valley State University, Grand Rapids, MI, USA. Aruin is with the Dept. of Physical Therapy, University of Illinois at Chicago, Chicago, IL, USA.