Muscle activity and postural behaviour in newborn infants. A polymyographic study

H SchloonH F Prechtl


In a group of 9 healthy newborns, spontaneous activity of different muscles was studied for 6 or 8 hours by means of surface electromyography on the 5th or 6th day of life. According to the local nursing routine the infants were placed in alternating left and right side positions. Averaged EMG activities were analysed with respect to behavioural states and observed postural behaviour. An improved recording technique and the logarithmic presentation of averaged EMG activities allowed the study of characteristics of tonic activity in state 1. The chin muscles showed the most specific EMG pattern in state 1. Chin muscle quiescence was observed during only 15% of that state. Lack of tonic activity was observed more in the beginning than at the end, but never in the middle of state 1. By visual analysis of 41 patterns of averaged EMG activities from the chin muscle it was found that increases of tonic activity only happen stepwise following concomitant phasic activities. Relaxation of tonic activity is either asymptotic or abrupt or by steps. The latter two are especially characteristic for the transition to state 2. Long periods of sustained tonic activity and low motility were characteristic for a long lasting state 1. The interva...Continue Reading


Feb 1, 1982·Psychiatry Research·J Marcus, S L Hans
May 22, 1998·Neuroscience and Biobehavioral Reviews·M Hadders-AlgraH Forssberg
Jul 27, 2012·Journal of Neurophysiology·Sandra L SaavedraMarjorie H Woollacott
Aug 17, 2006·Pediatric Physical Therapy : the Official Publication of the Section on Pediatrics of the American Physical Therapy Association·Emma C Cameron, Valerie Maehle
Nov 2, 2015·Clinical Neurophysiology : Official Journal of the International Federation of Clinical Neurophysiology·Anna-Liisa SatomaaSari-Leena Himanen
Oct 26, 2010·Consciousness and Cognition·Joel Krueger
Jan 1, 1983·Journal of Child Psychology and Psychiatry, and Allied Disciplines·B Hopkins
Jun 1, 1977·Developmental Medicine and Child Neurology·S Shirataki, H F Prechtl
Jul 23, 2004·Physical & Occupational Therapy in Pediatrics·Sarah L Westcott, Patricia A Burtner

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