Performance in myoelectric pattern recognition improves with transcranial direct current stimulation
Artikel i vetenskaplig tidskrift, 2024

Sensorimotor impairments, resulting from conditions like stroke and amputations, can profoundly impact an individual’s functional abilities and overall quality of life. Assistive and rehabilitation devices such as prostheses, exo-skeletons, and serious gaming in virtual environments can help to restore some degree of function and alleviate pain after sensorimotor impairments. Myoelectric pattern recognition (MPR) has gained popularity in the past decades as it provides superior control over said devices, and therefore efforts to facilitate and improve performance in MPR can result in better rehabilitation outcomes. One possibility to enhance MPR is to employ transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS) to facilitate motor learning. Twelve healthy able-bodied individuals participated in this crossover study to determine the effect of tDCS on MPR performance. Baseline training was followed by two sessions of either sham or anodal tDCS using the dominant and non-dominant arms. Assignments were randomized, and the MPR task consisted of 11 different hand/wrist movements, including rest or no movement. Surface electrodes were used to record EMG and the MPR open-source platform, BioPatRec, was used for decoding motor volition in real-time. The motion test was used to evaluate performance. We hypothesized that using anodal tDCS to increase the excitability of the primary motor cortex associated with non-dominant side in able-bodied individuals, will improve motor learning and thus MPR performance. Overall, we found that tDCS enhanced MPR performance, particularly in the non-dominant side. We were able to reject the null hypothesis and improvements in the motion test’s completion rate during tDCS (28% change, p-value: 0.023) indicate its potential as an adjunctive tool to enhance MPR and motor learning. tDCS appears promising as a tool to enhance the learning phase of using assistive devices using MPR, such as myoelectric prostheses.

brain modulation

myoelectric pattern recognition

phantom limb pain

bionic limb

motor learning


Shahrzad Damercheli

Center for Bionics and Pain Research

Chalmers, Elektroteknik, System- och reglerteknik

Kelly Morrenhof

Center for Bionics and Pain Research

Chalmers, Elektroteknik, System- och reglerteknik

Kirstin Ahmed

Center for Bionics and Pain Research

Chalmers, Elektroteknik, System- och reglerteknik

Max Jair Ortiz Catalan

Prometei Pain Rehabilitation Center

Center for Bionics and Pain Research

Bionics Institute

Chalmers, Elektroteknik, System- och reglerteknik


University of Melbourne

Scientific Reports

2045-2322 (ISSN) 20452322 (eISSN)

Vol. 14 1 11744





Hälsa och teknik



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