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Effect of Immobilisation on Neuromuscular Function In Vivo in Humans: A Systematic Review

Campbell, M; Varley-Campbell, J; Fulford, J; Taylor, B; Mileva, KN; Bowtell, JL; (2019) Effect of Immobilisation on Neuromuscular Function In Vivo in Humans: A Systematic Review. Sports Medicine 10.1007/s40279-019-01088-8. (In press). Green open access

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Abstract

BACKGROUND: Muscle strength loss following immobilisation has been predominantly attributed to rapid muscle atrophy. However, this cannot fully explain the magnitude of muscle strength loss, so changes in neuromuscular function (NMF) may be involved. OBJECTIVES: We systematically reviewed literature that quantified changes in muscle strength, size and NMF following periods of limb immobilisation in vivo in humans. METHODS: Studies were identified following systematic searches, assessed for inclusion, data extracted and quality appraised by two reviewers. Data were tabulated and reported narratively. RESULTS: Forty eligible studies were included, 22 immobilised lower and 18 immobilised upper limbs. Limb immobilisation ranged from 12 h to 56 days. Isometric muscle strength and muscle size declined following immobilisation; however, change magnitude was greater for strength than size. Evoked resting twitch force decreased for lower but increased for upper limbs. Rate of force development either remained unchanged or slowed for lower and typically slowed for upper limbs. Twitch relaxation rate slowed for both lower and upper limbs. Central motor drive typically decreased for both locations, while electromyography amplitude during maximum voluntary contractions decreased for the lower and presented mixed findings for the upper limbs. Trends imply faster rates of NMF loss relative to size earlier in immobilisation periods for all outcomes. CONCLUSIONS: Limb immobilisation results in non-uniform loss of isometric muscle strength, size and NMF over time. Different outcomes between upper and lower limbs could be attributed to higher degrees of central neural control of upper limb musculature. Future research should focus on muscle function losses and mechanisms following acute immobilisation. REGISTRATION: PROSPERO reference: CRD42016033692.

Type: Article
Title: Effect of Immobilisation on Neuromuscular Function In Vivo in Humans: A Systematic Review
Location: New Zealand
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.1007/s40279-019-01088-8
Publisher version: http://doi.org/10.1007/s40279-019-01088-8
Language: English
Additional information: Copyright © The Author(s) 2019 corrected ​publication 2019 Open Access, This article is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/), which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided you give appropriate credit to the original author(s) and the source, provide a link to the Creative Commons license, and indicate if changes were made.
UCL classification: UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Brain Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Brain Sciences > Div of Psychology and Lang Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Brain Sciences > Div of Psychology and Lang Sciences > Clinical, Edu and Hlth Psychology
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/10071922
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