METHOD: Electromyographic (EMG) signals of the orbicularis oris superior [OOS], orbicularis oris inferior [OOI] and depressor labii inferioris [DLI] were recorded during syllable production and expressed as polar-phase notations.
RESULT: PD participants exhibited the general features of reciprocity between OOS, OOI and DLI muscles as reflected in the EMG during syllable production. The control group showed significantly higher integrated EMG amplitude ratio in the DLI:OOS muscle pairs than PD participants. No speech rate effects were found in EMG muscle reciprocity and amplitude magnitude across all muscle pairs.
CONCLUSION: Similar patterns of muscle reciprocity in PD and controls suggest that corticomotoneuronal output to the facial nucleus and respective perioral muscles is relatively well-preserved in our cohort of mild idiopathic PD participants. Reduction of EMG amplitude ratio among PD participants is consistent with the putative reduction in the thalamocortical activation characteristic of this disease which limits motor cortex drive from generating appropriate commands which contributes to bradykinesia and hypokinesia of the orofacial mechanism.