Effect of thoracic spinal cord injury on forelimb somatosensory evoked potential

Angelo H All*, Shiyu Luo, Xiaogang Liu, Hasan Al-Nashash*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

In this paper, we investigate the forelimbs somatosensory evoked potential (SSEP) signals, which are representative of the integrity of ascending sensory pathways and their stability as well as function, recorded from corresponding cortices, post thoracic spinal cord injury (SCI). We designed a series of distinctive transection SCI to investigate whether forelimbs SSEPs change after right T10 hemi-transection, T8 and T10 double hemi-transection and T8 complete transection in rat model of SCI. We used electrical stimuli to stimulate median nerves and recorded SSEPs from left and right somatosensory areas of both cortices. We monitored pre-injury baseline and verified changes in forelimbs SSEP signals on Days 4, 7, 14, and 21 post-injury. We previously characterized hindlimb SSEP changes for the abovementioned transection injuries. The focus of this article is to investigate the quality and quantity of changes that may occur in the forelimb somatosensory pathways post-thoracic transection SCI. It is important to test the stability of forelimb SSEPs following thoracic SCI because of their potential utility as a proxy baseline for the traumatic SCIs in clinical cases wherein there is no opportunity to gather baseline of the lower extremities. We observed that the forelimb SSEP amplitudes increased following thoracic SCI but gradually returned to the baseline. Despite changes found in the raw signals, statistical analysis found forelimb SSEP signals become stable relatively soon. In summary, though there are changes in value (with p >  0.05), they are not statistically significant. Therefore, the null hypothesis that the mean of the forelimb SSEP signals are the same across multiple days after injury onset cannot be rejected during the acute phase.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)22-27
Number of pages6
JournalBrain Research Bulletin
Volume173
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Aug 2021

User-Defined Keywords

  • Animals
  • Disease Models, Animal
  • Evoked Potentials, Somatosensory/physiology
  • Female
  • Forelimb/physiopathology
  • Male
  • Rats
  • Rats, Sprague-Dawley
  • Somatosensory Cortex/physiopathology
  • Spinal Cord Injuries/physiopathology
  • Thoracic Vertebrae/physiopathology

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