Document Type



Master of Science (MS)


Biomedical Engineering

First Advisor's Name

Dr. Ranu Jung

First Advisor's Committee Title

Committee chair

Second Advisor's Name

Dr. Jacob McPherson

Second Advisor's Committee Title

Committee member

Third Advisor's Name

Dr. Zachary Danziger

Third Advisor's Committee Title

Committee member


Diaphragm pacing, Respiratory

Date of Defense



During diaphragmatic pacing reverse recruitment of muscle fibers causes muscle fatigue. Current diaphragmatic pacing paradigms also do not permit sigh-like behavior. In spontaneously breathing anesthetized rats, studies were carried out to determine if synergized pacing of external intercostal muscles and the diaphragm would increase the efficiency of diaphragm stimulation and thus a) achieve the desired ventilatory breath volume profile with reduced diaphragm muscle fatigue, and/or b) be able to elicit sigh-like behavior by periodically increasing stimulation. Under combined inspiratory muscle stimulation, a fatigue index calculated for the diaphragm muscle (n=6 rats) was significantly lower (p<0.05) than in the diaphragm muscle alone. Significantly higher tidal volumes (n=7) could be generated during cycles in which sigh was induced (p<0.05). Thus, synergized activation of the inspiratory muscles could be used as a suitable strategy to reduce the stimulation-induced muscle fatigue and to induce a sigh-like behavior that could lead to improved respiratory health.





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