Arthrogenic muscle response induced by an experimental knee joint effusion is mediated by pre- and post-synaptic spinal mechanisms

Riann M. Palmieri, James A. Tom, Jeffery E. Edwards, Arthur Weltman, Ethan N. Saliba, Danny J. Mistry, Christopher D. Ingersoll

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

85 Scopus citations


Knee joint effusion results in quadriceps inhibition and is accompanied by increased excitability in the soleus musculature. The purpose of this study was to determine if soleus arthrogenic muscle response is regulated by pre- or post-synaptic spinal mechanisms. Ten healthy adults (two females and eight males) were measured on two occasions. At the first session, subjects had their knee injected with 60 ml of saline and in the other session they did not. Pre- and post-synaptic spinal mechanisms were measured at baseline, immediately following a needle stick, immediately following a Xylocaine injection, and 25 and 45 min post-saline injection. A mixed effects model for repeated measures was used to analyze each dependent variable. The a priori alpha level was set a P≤0.05. The percentage of the unconditioned reflex amplitude for recurrent inhibition (P<0.0001) and reflex activation history (P<0.0001) significantly increased from baseline at 25 and 45 min post-effusion. Soleus arthrogenic muscle response seen following knee joint effusion is mediated by both pre- and post-synaptic mechanisms. In conclusion, the arthrogenic muscle response seen in the soleus musculature following joint effusion is regulated by both pre- and post-synaptic control mechanisms. Our data are the first step in understanding the neural networks involved in the patterned muscle response that occurs following joint effusion.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)631-640
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of Electromyography and Kinesiology
Issue number6
StatePublished - Dec 2004


  • H-reflex
  • Injury
  • Knee
  • Muscle weakness
  • Renshaw


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