an involuntary resistance to passive movement as may occur in cerebral cortical disorders.
gegenhalten/ge·gen·hal·ten/ (ga″gen-hahl´tin) [Ger.] an involuntary resistance to passive movement, as may occur in cerebral cortical disorders.
Etymology: Ger, counterpressure
the involuntary resistance to passive movement of the extremities. It may occur as a symptom of catatonia, in which there is passive resistance to stretching movements, even when the patient attempts to cooperate. The effect may be psychogenic in origin or may be a sign of dementia or cerebral deterioration. Also called paratonia.
gegenhaltenNeurology Involuntary resistance to passive movement, that ↑ with velocity of movement and continues through the full arc of motion; gegenhalten may be due to diffuse forebrain dysfunction, as occurs in anterior cerebral artery occlusion–'arteriosclerotic parkinsonism' or pseudoparkinsonism, and may be accompanied by the grasp reflex. Cf Clasp-knife phenomenon, Cogwheel rigidity.
German (with a capital G, as with all German nouns) for counterpressure, the term is nonetheless used in English to describe a certain type of neurologic or muscular opposition to resistance associated with various catatonic states.