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September 1964

Ocular Electromyography in Brain Stem Dysfunction: Clinical and Electrophysiological Analysis of a Case With Multiple Eye Movement Disorders

Author Affiliations

From the departments of neurology, pediatrics, and ophthalmology, New York University School of Medicine.

Arch Neurol. 1964;11(3):265-272. doi:10.1001/archneur.1964.00460210043004

The purpose of this paper is to show how electromyography (EMG) of the eye muscles serves to elucidate physiologic phenomena occurring in the presence of brain stem dysfunction.

One of the basic tenets of ocular muscle physiology is that excitation of one set of muscles (agonists) is associated with the inhibition of the opposing set (antagonists), exemplified both ipsilaterally and contralaterally. Electromyography affords an opportunity to demonstrate these basic phenomena not only in the course of normal eye movements but also in conjugate and disconjugate gaze disorders and even, as in this case, in apparent (clinical) paralysis of eye movement. While many descriptions of ocular motor disorders are available, most reports discuss the defects in eye movement without specifically alluding to excitation or, in particular, to inhibition. This report will emphasize these phenomena and the correlation of clinical and electromyographic findings.

From the electrophysiologic point of view, one of the

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