Presence of WBC, decreased strength, and delayed soreness in muscle after eccentric exercise

D L MacIntyre, W D Reid, D M Lyster, I J Szasz, D C McKenzie
Journal of Applied Physiology 1996, 80 (3): 1006-13
The purposes of this study were to assess the presence of 99mTc-labeled white blood cells (WBC) in exercised muscle compared with nonexercised muscle over time and to determine the time course of delayed onset muscle soreness (DOMS) and eccentric torque in 10 female subjects. A pretest was followed by 300 eccentric repetitions of the right quadriceps. DOMS and eccentric torque were measured at 2, 4, 20, 24, 48, and 72 h postexercise. Eccentric torque was also tested at 0 h. Radionuclide images of both quadriceps were taken at 2, 4, 20, and 24 h postexercise. The presence of 99mTc-WBC in the exercised muscle was significantly greater (P < 0.001) than in the nonexercised muscle. Eccentric torque declined at 0 and 24 h postexercise. DOMS peaked at 24 h postexercise. The presence of 99mTc-WBC in the exercised muscle in the first 24 h suggests that acute inflammation occurs as a result of exercise-induced muscle injury. The bimodal pattern of eccentric torque supports the hypothesis that more than one mechanism is involved.

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