State-of-the-Art Diagnostic Methods to Diagnose Equine Spinal Disorders, With Special Reference to Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation and Transcranial Electrical Stimulation.
Spinal cord disorders are a common problem in equine medicine. However, finding the site of the lesion is challenging for veterinarians because of a lack of sensitive diagnostic methods that can assess neuronal functional integrity in horses. Although medical imaging is frequently applied to help diagnose corticospinal disorders, this approach does not reveal functional information. For the latter, transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) and more recently transcranial electrical stimulation (TES) can be useful. These are brain stimulation techniques that create either magnetic or electrical fields passing through the motor cortex, inducing muscular responses, which can be recorded either intramuscularly or extramuscularly by needle or surface electrodes. This permits the evaluation of the functional integrity of the spinal motor tracts and the nerve conduction pathways. The interest in TES in human medicine emerged these last years because unlike TMS, TES tends to bypass the motor cortex of the brain and predominantly relies on direct activation of corticospinal and extrapyramidal axons. Results from human medicine have indicated that TMS and TES recordings are mildly if not at all affected by sedation. Therefore, this technique can be reliably used in human patients under either sedation or full anesthesia to assess functional integrity of the corticospinal and adjunct motor tracts. This opens important new avenues in equine medicine.
PMID: 31668311 [PubMed – indexed for MEDLINE]
J Equine Vet Sci. 2019 10;81:102790
Authors: Journée SL, de Meeus d’Argenteuil C, De Maré L, Boshuizen B, Vanderperren K, Journée LH, de Bruijn M, Bergmann W, Delesalle C