Evaluation of the muscular activity duration in shoulders with rotator cuff tear using inertial sensors and electromyography
Shoulder disorders, including rotator cuff tears, affect the shoulder function and result in adapted muscle activation. Although these adaptations have been studied in controlled conditions, free-living activities have not been investigated. Based on the kinematics measured with inertial sensors and portable electromyography, the objectives of this study were to quantify the duration of the muscular activation in the upper trapezius (UT), medial deltoid (MD) and biceps brachii (BB) during motion and to investigate the effect of rotator cuff tear in laboratory settings and daily conditions. The duration of movements and muscular activations were analysed separately and together using the relative time of activation (T-EMG/mov). Laboratory measurements showed the parameter's reliability through movement repetitions (ICC > 0.74) and differences in painful shoulders compared with healthy ones (p < 0.05): longer activation for UT; longer activation for MD during abduction and tendency to shorter activation in other movements; shorter activation for BB. In daily conditions, T-EMG/mov for UT was longer, whereas it was shorter for MD and BB (p < 0.05). Moreover, significant correlations were observed between these parameters and clinical scores. This study thus provides new insights into the rotator cuff tear effect on duration of muscular activation in daily activity.