Affiliations: [a] Department of Clinical Neurophysiology, Institute of Neurosciences, Uppsala University, Sweden
| [b] Faculdade Medicina Sao Jose do Rio Preto, Investigation Neuromuscular Laboratory, Sao Jose do Rio Preto SP, Brazil
| [c] Department of Neurology, Duke University Medical Center, Durham, NC, USA
Correspondence to: Erik Stålberg, Department of Clinical Neurophysiology, Uppsala Academic Hospital, Sweden. E-mail: [email protected].
Abstract: Comparing results from jitter studies performed with voluntary and electrical activation is difficult to perform quantitatively, particularly in complex signals as seen in reinnervation. High jitter values in individual spikes in these multispike signals can be missed with both activation methods, which introduces a bias towards more normal values. With voluntary activation, triggering on a spike from an abnormal end-plate in multispike potentials will overestimate individual jitter values and the number of abnormal jitter values. With electrical stimulation, artefactually-increased jitter may be caused by subliminal stimulation, which causes uncertainty at the stimulation point. Electrical stimulation also may activate many axons, causing signal summation, with erroneous or impossible jitter estimation. Awareness of such pitfalls can improve the correct performance and interpretation of jitter recordings. Quantitative comparisons of results can be made between studies in reinnervated muscle performed with the same activation method, but not between results obtained with different activation methods.