Possible gender-related differences in a jaw reflex evoked by stimulation of the human lip

M. F. Lyons, A. M. Okdeh, S. W. Cadden

    Research output: Contribution to journalMeeting abstractpeer-review


    It has been reported that the latency of the jaw jerk reflex in symptom-free human female subjects is significantly shorter than in male subjects (Kossioni et al., 1994). In the present study, we have begun to investigate whether there are any gender-related differences in other jaw reflexes. The EMG recordings were made from an active masseter muscle in 16 young adult age-matched subjects (eight male, eight female; aged 20–43 years). Inhibitory reflexes were evoked in the muscle by applying stimuli through bipolar electrodes clipped over the lower lip with the cathode placed intraorally on the oral mucosa. While the stimuli were being applied, the subjects maintained the EMG level at around 10% of maximum with the aid of visual feedback. The presence or absence of reflex responses was determined as previously described (Louca et al., 1996). Wilcoxon Rank Sum tests were used to compare the properties of the short- (~10–15 ms) and long- (~40–50 ms) latency inhibitory reflexes evoked by the stimuli in the two groups. There was no significant difference between the male and female groups in the threshold or latency of either reflex. However, the duration of the long-latency inhibition was significantly shorter in females than in males (median values: 29·0 versus 44·0 ms, P=0·015). These preliminary findings suggest that, at least in young human subjects, there is a gender-related difference in the strength but not in the presence of long-latency inhibitory jaw reflexes.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)887
    Number of pages1
    JournalJournal of Oral Rehabilitation
    Issue number9
    Publication statusPublished - 2002
    EventSociety for Oral Physiology Store Kro Group, 22nd Biennial Meeting - Lugano, Switzerland
    Duration: 7 Jun 200110 Jun 2001


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