Joel E. Frontera, Monica Verduzco-Gutierrez

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter


Spasticity is commonly defined as a velocity-dependent increase in muscle tone with exaggerated tendon jerks resulting from hyperexcitability of the stretch reflex. Spasticity is one component of the upper motor neuron syndrome, which also includes hyperreflexia, clonus, muscle cocontraction, fatigability, and muscle weakness. Spasticity is not always a hindrance and each patient’s clinical situation should be carefully evaluated to look at the way spasticity is impeding his or her function, pain, physical condition, or caregiving. Furthermore, worsening of baseline spasticity should warrant a workup for noxious stimuli or infection as a cause. Options for treatment include oral medications such as baclofen and tizanidine as well as other interventional approaches such as chemodenervation coupled with rehabilitation, intrathecal baclofen, and/or surgical approaches.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationEssentials of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation
Subtitle of host publicationMusculoskeletal Disorders, Pain, and Rehabilitation
Number of pages5
ISBN (Electronic)9780323549479
StatePublished - Jan 1 2018
Externally publishedYes


  • Abnormal involuntary movements
  • Chemodenervation
  • Muscle tone
  • Spasticity
  • Upper motor neuron signs

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine(all)


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