Effects of spinal cord lesioning on somatosensory and neurogenic-motor evoked potentials

Spine (Phila Pa 1976). 1989 Jul;14(7):673-82. doi: 10.1097/00007632-198907000-00005.


Somatosensory (SEPs) and neurogenic-motor evoked potentials (NMEPs) were elicited from 16 hogs and two humans before, during, and after spinal cordotomy, dorsal, or ventral root rhizotomy. Results indicated that SEPs appear to be insensitive to the effects of motor tract lesioning in hogs and humans. In every case of motor paraplegia, SEPs remained unchanged in the presence of abnormal ischiatic/sciatic NMEPs. These results suggest that SEPs are not adequately sensitive to the functional status of the motor system in hogs and humans. Ischiatic/sciatic NMEPs remained unchanged after sensory tract lesioning, suggesting that these NMEPs are insensitive to the functional status of the sensory system. These results suggest that SEPs and NMEPs should be used in combination when monitoring spinal cord function during surgeries that place that structure at risk.

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Evoked Potentials, Somatosensory*
  • Humans
  • Monitoring, Physiologic*
  • Motor Cortex / physiology*
  • Spinal Cord / physiology
  • Spinal Cord / surgery*
  • Spinal Nerve Roots / physiology
  • Spinal Nerve Roots / surgery
  • Swine