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In Biomedical engineering online

This research has proved that mechanomyographic (MMG) signals can be used for evaluating muscle performance. Stimulation of the lost physiological functions of a muscle using an electrical signal has been determined crucial in clinical and experimental settings in which voluntary contraction fails in stimulating specific muscles. Previous studies have already indicated that characterizing contractile properties of muscles using MMG through neuromuscular electrical stimulation (NMES) showed excellent reliability. Thus, this review highlights the use of MMG signals on evaluating skeletal muscles under electrical stimulation. In total, 336 original articles were identified from the Scopus and SpringerLink electronic databases using search keywords for studies published between 2000 and 2020, and their eligibility for inclusion in this review has been screened using various inclusion criteria. After screening, 62 studies remained for analysis, with two additional articles from the bibliography, were categorized into the following: (1) fatigue, (2) torque, (3) force, (4) stiffness, (5) electrode development, (6) reliability of MMG and NMES approaches, and (7) validation of these techniques in clinical monitoring. This review has found that MMG through NMES provides feature factors for muscle activity assessment, highlighting standardized electromyostimulation and MMG parameters from different experimental protocols. Despite the evidence of mathematical computations in quantifying MMG along with NMES, the requirement of the processing speed, and fluctuation of MMG signals influence the technique to be prone to errors. Interestingly, although this review does not focus on machine learning, there are only few studies that have adopted it as an alternative to statistical analysis in the assessment of muscle fatigue, torque, and force. The results confirm the need for further investigation on the use of sophisticated computations of features of MMG signals from electrically stimulated muscles in muscle function assessment and assistive technology such as prosthetics control.

Uwamahoro Raphael, Sundaraj Kenneth, Subramaniam Indra Devi


Electrical stimulation, Mechanomyography, Muscle activity, Muscle assessment, Muscle mechanics