Non-invasive isometric force measurement of plantar flexors in rats

Aditya Chawla, Robert J. Spinner, Michael Torres Lizardi, Michael J. Yaszemski, Anthony J. Windebank, Huan Wang

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Scopus citations


Introduction: Isometric muscle force measurement is a sensitive marker for motor function recovery in rat nerve repair models. Current methods of eliciting maximal isometric force with nerve stimulation cannot provide longitudinal data. Methods: We developed a novel method for measuring isometric muscle force with a device designed to allow minimally invasive nerve stimulation and measurement of plantar flexion force. This indirectly elicited muscle force was compared with muscle force elicited by direct muscle stimulation in 3 surgical models. Results: The force measured after sciatic nerve transection and repair followed a parabolic trend. There was a postinjury decrease in force that continued until postoperative day 42, after which the force increased with time, indicating muscle reinnervation. Conclusions: This approach can track longitudinal changes in force in the most common animal model for studies of clinically relevant problems in the peripheral nerve field.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)812-821
Number of pages10
JournalMuscle and Nerve
Issue number5
StatePublished - Nov 1 2014


  • Functional evaluation
  • Isometric force
  • Nerve injury
  • Noninvasive
  • Rat

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physiology
  • Clinical Neurology
  • Cellular and Molecular Neuroscience
  • Physiology (medical)


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