May 21, 2015

Webinar: An Individually Tuneable Model of Spasticity and Contracture in Patients with Cerebral Palsy

Learn about an OpenSim plug-in to model spasticity, a method to model contracture, our validation against instrumented spasticity assessments, and how to tune model parameters to match individual patient data


A recording of the event is available for viewing.


Title: An Individually Tuneable Model of Spasticity and Contracture in Patients with Cerebral Palsy
  • Dr. Marjolein van der Krogt, VU University Medical Center, Amsterdam, The Netherlands
  • Dr. Lynn Bar-On, KU Leuven, Belgium
Time: Thursday, May 21, 2015 at 10:00 a.m. Pacific Daylight Time


Increased joint resistance is an important phenomenon in patients with cerebral palsy (CP), and is caused by a combination of neural and non-neural components. Spasticity is part of the neural component and is typically defined as velocity-dependent hyperactivity to passive stretch. Contracture can be defined as the non-neural component of hyper-resistance, and is due to increased passive tissue stiffness.

In this webinar, we present and validate an individually tunable model for hyper-resistance in CP, focusing on the hamstrings muscles. Specifically, we aim to answer the following research questions:

  • To what extent can we explain contracture by altered passive muscle properties?
  • To what extent can we explain spasticity by a (purely) velocity-dependent hyper-activity of the stretch reflex?

The velocity-dependent spasticity model has been implemented as a plug-in in OpenSim ( We will show how this spasticity model can be applied, and how the model parameters as well as the passive muscle properties can be tuned based on slow and fast passive muscle stretches during instrumented spasticity assessment.

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