Focal cooling improves neuronal conduction in peroneal neuropathy at the fibular neck.

Heat can induce conduction block (CB) in demyelinated neurons; whether cooling can reverse CB and increase strength is uncertain. In six patients with electrophysiologic evidence of peroneal neuropathy at the fibular neck with definite motor CB, standard motor nerve conduction studies were performed at 32 degrees C and then after the fibular neck region was cooled with an ice pack to 8 degrees -12 degrees C. In all patients, cooling increased the amplitude and area of the compound motor action potential obtained with popliteal fossa stimulation, decreasing the relative amplitude drop across the fibular neck from a mean of 78% to 55%. A concomitant increase in foot dorsiflexor strength was clearly observed in three of the six patients. Both the electrophysiologic and clinical changes readily reversed upon rewarming. These data support the belief that, in compressive neuropathies, cooling relieves conduction block in selected motor neurons, improving strength.
AuthorsS B Rutkove
JournalMuscle & nerve (Muscle Nerve) Vol. 24 Issue 12 Pg. 1622-6 (Dec 2001) ISSN: 0148-639X [Print] United States
PMID11745971 (Publication Type: Clinical Trial, Journal Article)
CopyrightCopyright 2001 John Wiley & Sons, Inc.
  • Action Potentials
  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Demyelinating Diseases (diagnosis, physiopathology, therapy)
  • Electromyography
  • Female
  • Fibula
  • Humans
  • Hypothermia, Induced
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Neural Conduction
  • Peroneal Neuropathies (diagnosis, physiopathology, therapy)

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