Patellar Lab Report Essay

1793 WordsDec 19, 20148 Pages
Introduction There are two groups of reflexes in the human body, with two ways to categorize each of them. Reflexes can either be inborn and connected through the nervous system, or they can be learned through practice. Another way to explain a reflexive category would be autonomic reflexes or somatic reflexes. Autonomic reflexes are those which are unaware to us and act on visceral organs of the body, whereas somatic reflexes involve skeletal muscle stimulation. Both types of reflexes are put into effect via the nervous system. (1) The Patellar reflex, or Knee-Jerk reflex, is used to test the nervous tissue in the spinal cord from L2-L4. The patellar reflex is known as a “reflex arc”. It is a negative feedback circuit that is made of…show more content…
At the same time the subject’s patellar tendon was sharply tapped. The final element that was tested against the baseline reflex was the influence of fatigue on the strength of the reflex response. This was achieved by having the subject run up and down three levels of stairs three times in the Frost building stairwell of Holyoke Community College. The subject immediately came back to the original sitting position on the edge of the lab bench with legs dangling freely, and the patellar tendon was tapped once more. One subject was used, and was seated in the same position for each of the three tests performed. Because the patellar reflex is immediate, a video was taken during each tap with the hammer to visually compare the strength differences for each influence that was put into effect. This provided a steady, unwavering result with the option of repeated viewing for the conclusion of the experiment. After all three stages of the experiment were completed, the videos were reviewed for comparison between the baseline reflex and the three changing factors, along with any discrepancies and problematic areas that may have altered the results. The strength of the reflex was recorded as either equal to, more vigorous than, or less vigorous than the baseline reflex and the results were put into a simple chart. Results When testing the effects of muscle

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