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Laboratory Reference for Clinical Neurophysiology$
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Jay A. Liveson and Dong M. Ma

Print publication date: 1999

Print ISBN-13: 9780195129243

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: March 2012

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195129243.001.0001

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Single-Fiber Electromyography and Related Studies

Single-Fiber Electromyography and Related Studies

(p.372) Chapter 19 Single-Fiber Electromyography and Related Studies
Laboratory Reference for Clinical Neurophysiology

Jay A. Liveson

Dong M. Ma

Oxford University Press

The techniques described in this chapter depend on the ability of the examiner to isolate single-fiber action potentials (SFAPs). These are the electrical potentials caused by the discharge of single muscle fibers. By careful manipulation of this needle during minimal contraction, the examiner can isolate an individual SFAP and use it as the basis for studies. Other specialized equipment is necessary. A trigger device must be available that permits the sweep to be triggered by an SFAP. A delay line is necessary. Furthermore, the oscilloscope must be capable of fast sweep speeds and variable filter settings. In single-fiber electromyography (SFEMG), the object is to study the relationship between two fibers of the same motor unit. During an examination, most of the SFAPs appear as isolated potentials. These potential pairs are the ones that can be studied. One of these serves as the trigger potential and the other as the slave potential.

Keywords:   single-fiber action potentials, trigger device, oscilloscope, single-fiber electromyography, trigger potential, slave potential, single muscle fibers

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