Ectopic impulse generation in demyelinated axons: Effects of PaCO2, pH, and disodium edetate

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Demyelinating lesions in the trigeminal root were produced by chronic implantation of chromic suture in 12 cats. Two types of abnormal repetitive action potential generation were recorded from demyelinated fibers: reflected spikes and afterdischarge. Both types of abnormal impulse generation were increased by hypocalcemia induced by disodium edetate infusion, hypocapnia produced by hyperventilation, and, to a lesser extent, alkalosis secondary to sodium bicarbonate administration. This hyperexcitability of fibers could be inhibited by hypoventilation with elevation of Pa co 2 or by calcium chloride administration. These results may help explain the pathophysiological basis of paroxysmal symptoms in multiple sclerosis and other disorders in which demyelination is a prominent feature.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)378-383
Number of pages6
JournalAnnals of Neurology
Issue number4
StatePublished - Apr 1981
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neurology
  • Clinical Neurology


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