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Revista Brasileira de Medicina do Esporte

Print version ISSN 1517-8692


BARONI, Bruno Manfredini et al. Dorsiflexor and plantarflexor neuromuscular adaptations at two-week immobilization after ankle sprain. Rev Bras Med Esporte [online]. 2010, vol.16, n.5, pp.358-362. ISSN 1517-8692.

INTRODUCTION: Ankle sprains are a kind of injury with high incidence that is usually treated with an immobilization period, leading to structural and functional adaptation in the muscles around this joint. PURPOSE: To identify the dorsiflexor and plantarflexor muscles adaptations after two weeks of immobilization in subjects who suffered ankle sprain. METHODS: Eleven subjects (six women and five men) who suffered a second degree ankle sprain underwent 14 days of ankle joint immobilization with a plaster cast. After removal of the plaster cast, the following bilaterally evaluations were obtained: (1) leg circumference; (2) ankle joint range of motion (ROM); (3) maximal isometric torque of plantar and dorsiflexors obtained in seven different angles; and (4) electromyographic signals of the tibialis anterior (TA), gastrocnemius medialis (GM) and soleus (SO) muscles. Results obtained in the immobilized side were compared to the contralateral healthy side with a paired Student's t-test (p<0.05). RESULTS: Immobilized side presents decrease (1) at the proximal leg circumference, (2) in dorsiflexor and plantarflexor ROM, (3) in dorsiflexor and plantarflexor maximal isometric torque and (4) in electromyographic signal of the TA at all joint angles and at the longest muscle lengths in SO. There was no alteration in the electromyographic signal of the GM muscle. CONCLUSION: A relatively short immobilization period (two weeks) impairs the functionality of ankle dorsiflexor and plantarflexor muscles.

Keywords : immobilization; ankle; skeletal muscle.

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