Decorticate posturing


An extension of the arms and legs, indicating severe brain injury.

Associated with the arms flexed over the chest, with elbows, wrists and fingers flexed, and legs extended and rotated inward

Decorticate posturing in response to pain has a score of three in the motor section of the Glasgow Coma Scale.

Associated with disinhibition of the red nucleus with facilitation of the rubrospinal tract activating motor neurons in the cervical spinal cord supplying the flexor muscles of the upper extremities.

Associated with disruption of the lateral corticospinal tract which facilitates motor neurons in the lower spinal cord supplying flexor muscles of the lower extremities, resulting in extensor posturing of the lower extremities.

Such posturing indicates that there may be damage to areas including the cerebral hemispheres, the internal capsule, and the thalamus or midbrain.

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