What are the signs and symptoms of spasticity?

Updated: Mar 01, 2018
  • Author: Krupa Pandey, MD; Chief Editor: Stephen A Berman, MD, PhD, MBA  more...
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Answer

Upper motor neuron syndrome results from damage to descending motor pathways at the cortical, brainstem, or spinal cord levels. When the injury that leads to spasticity is acute, muscle tone is flaccid with hyporeflexia before the appearance of spasticity. The interval between injury and the appearance of spasticity varies from days to months according to the level of the lesion. In addition to weakness and increased muscle tone, the signs in spasticity include the following (see Clinical Presentation):

  • Clonus

  • Clasp-knife phenomenon

  • Hyperreflexia

  • Babinski sign

  • Flexor reflexes

  • Flexor spasms


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