Date of Award




Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)


Department of Biomedical Sciences

Content Description

1 online resource (xii, 200 pages) : color illustrations

Dissertation/Thesis Chair

Jonathan S Carp

Committee Members

Jonathan R Wolpaw, Xiang Yang Chen, Damian S Shin, Terence C Wagenknecht


electromyography, external urethral sphincter, lower urinary tract, micturition, motoneurons, spinal cord injury, Urinary organs, Spinal cord

Subject Categories

Neuroscience and Neurobiology


Lower urinary tract (LUT) dysfunction is a major problem for people with spinal cord injury (SCI). SCI impairs the reciprocal coordination of the two main LUT functional components: the bladder, a storage reservoir for urine; and the external urethral sphincter muscle (EUS), which regulates the passage of urine through the urethra. This impairment frequently results in detrusor-sphincter dyssynergia (DSD), a dangerous condition in which involuntary EUS contraction prevents voiding of urine from the bladder. Despite the critical role of the EUS during normal function and in DSD, studies of the contribution of SCI-induced EUS motoneuron abnormalities to EUS and LUT dysfunction are rare and this contribution remains poorly understood. This represents a major deficiency in the current understanding of DSD.