Compound muscle action potentials and spinal evoked potentials in experimental spine maneuver

Spine (Phila Pa 1976). 1989 Jul;14(7):687-91. doi: 10.1097/00007632-198907000-00007.


In this study, the authors evaluated the effects of spine manipulations, similar to those used in scoliosis surgery, on the compound muscle action potential (CMAP) and spinal evoked potential (SEP) in 25 cats: a distraction maneuver was performed in ten, a rotation in five, and a combined (distraction and rotation) procedure in ten cats. Compound muscle action potential was only minimally changed by the rotation maneuver alone in all five cats. Distraction resulted in earlier deterioration of CMAP than SEP; when CMAP was no longer elicitable in ten cats, seven still showed measurable SEP. All ten cats became paraplegic. With the combined procedure, both CMAP and SEP were abolished earlier than with distraction alone. This was observed in all ten cats becoming paraplegic. The authors further extended the study to ten rabbits having experimentally induced scoliosis. Following corrective surgery with distraction and derotation, eight rabbits lost both CMAP and SEP. Two lost CMAP with still recordable SEP. All ten rabbits became paraplegic. These findings suggest that monitoring CMAP is a more sensitive measure than SEP, and that the spinal cord is more vulnerable to a combined distraction and derotation maneuver than to either one alone.

MeSH terms

  • Action Potentials
  • Animals
  • Cats
  • Electric Stimulation
  • Monitoring, Physiologic*
  • Muscles / innervation*
  • Rabbits
  • Spinal Cord / physiology*
  • Spine / physiology
  • Spine / surgery*