DOI: 10.1161/str.55.suppl_1.tmp35 ISSN: 0039-2499

Abstract TMP35: Short Interval Intracortical Inhibition is Associated With Leg Motor Function in Chronic Stroke

Trenley Anderson, Pragnya Iyengar, Ahlam Salameh, Kelsey R Duncan, Jessica McCabe, Margaret Skelly, Terri Hisel, Sarah Grabinski, Liangliang Zhang, Svetlana Pundik
  • Advanced and Specialized Nursing
  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine
  • Neurology (clinical)

Objective: Stroke disrupts inhibitory and excitatory networks in the brain. To develop better therapies, we need to understand the role of inhibitory and excitatory systems. Paired-pulse transcranial magnetic stimulation (ppTMS) allows for evaluation of these inhibitory and excitatory systems. Our objective was to explore the relationship between Short Interval Intracortical Inhibition (SICI) and Intracortical Facilitation (ICF) ppTMS measures for tibialis anterior (TA) and measures of lower limb motor function in chronic stroke.

Methods: Lower limb motor function was evaluated with Fugl-Meyer for Lower Limb (FM), gait speed (max and preferred), Timed-up-and-go (TUG), Functional Gait Assessment (FGA) and Gait Assessment and Intervention Tool (GAIT). SICI was collected with interstimulus interval of 2ms and ICF with 10ms. The conditioning stimulus was 90% and test stimulus was 120% of active motor threshold. Motor evoked potentials (MEPs) were collected for both paretic or non-paretic TAs while volitionally activated to 20% of maximum effort. SICI and ICF were calculated as percent of test stimulus (TS) amplitude. Analysis included descriptive statistics and linear models controlling for age, months post-stroke, and gender. TUG test time was log-transformed.

Results: Study participants (n=34) were 66±8 years old, 4.9±4 years after stroke and 76% male. Mean±SD FM was 25.1±3.7 and preferred gait speed was 0.52±0.30 m/s. Relative to TS amplitude, SICI was 107±27% and ICF was 175±71% for paretic leg and, for non-paretic leg, SICI was 108±42% and ICF was 159±66%. For paretic leg after controlling for ICF, a 10% lower SICI was associated with the following: 0.89 point better FM (95% CI: 0.37-1.42), 14% better TUG (95% CI: 3-23%), 0.08 m/s faster max speed (95% CI: 0.02-0.14), and 0.05 m/s faster preferred walking speed (95% CI: 0.01-0.10). For non-paretic limb, a 10% lower SICI was associated with a 0.43 point better FGA (95% CI: 0.11-0.76) while a 10% lower ICF was associated with a 0.73 point better GAIT (95% CI: 0.37-1.10).

Conclusion: Greater inhibition with paired pulse of both paretic and non-paretic limbs was predictive better motor abilities. These findings are related to previous work and warrant future investigations.

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