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Proceedings Paper

Near-infrared signals associated with electrical stimulation of peripheral nerves
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Paper Abstract

We report our studies on the optical signals measured non-invasively on electrically stimulated peripheral nerves. The stimulation consists of the delivery of 0.1 ms current pulses, below the threshold for triggering any visible motion, to a peripheral nerve in human subjects (we have studied the sural nerve and the median nerve). In response to electrical stimulation, we observe an optical signal that peaks at about 100 ms post-stimulus, on a much longer time scale than the few milliseconds duration of the electrical response, or sensory nerve action potential (SNAP). While the 100 ms optical signal we measured is not a direct optical signature of neural activation, it is nevertheless indicative of a mediated response to neural activation. We argue that this may provide information useful for understanding the origin of the fast optical signal (also on a 100 ms time scale) that has been measured non-invasively in the brain in response to cerebral activation. Furthermore, the optical response to peripheral nerve activation may be developed into a diagnostic tool for peripheral neuropathies, as suggested by the delayed optical signals (average peak time: 230 ms) measured in patients with diabetic neuropathy with respect to normal subjects (average peak time: 160 ms).

Paper Details

Date Published: 23 February 2009
PDF: 7 pages
Proc. SPIE 7174, Optical Tomography and Spectroscopy of Tissue VIII, 71741C (23 February 2009); doi: 10.1117/12.809428
Show Author Affiliations
Sergio Fantini, Tufts Univ. (United States)
Debbie K. Chen, Tufts Univ. (United States)
Jeffrey M. Martin, Tufts Univ. (United States)
Boston Univ. (United States)
Angelo Sassaroli, Tufts Univ. (United States)
Peter R. Bergethon, Boston Univ. (United States)


Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 7174:
Optical Tomography and Spectroscopy of Tissue VIII
Bruce J. Tromberg; Arjun G. Yodh; Mamoru Tamura; Eva M. Sevick-Muraca; Robert R. Alfano, Editor(s)

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