Contributions to Books:
U Hofstötter, S. M. Danner, K. Minassian:
"Paraspinal Magnetic and Transcutaneous Electrical Stimulation";
in: "Encyclopedia of Computational Neuroscience",
D. Jaeger, R. Jung (ed.);
Springer Science+Business Media,
Paraspinal magnetic and electrical stimulation target deep neural structures within the vertebral canal and in-between neighboring vertebrae from a distance of several centimeters, either with magnetic coils or skin electrodes. The principal mechanism of stimulation at the neuronal level is the same for magnetic and electrical stimulation and is given by the induced electric field component or, in an equivalent way, the electric potential, generated along the anatomical path of the nerve fibers. Yet, the generation of electric fields by electromagnetic induction or electrical stimulation bases on different physical principles and the currents generated differ substantially, both as a function of time (pulse shape) and space (distribution in the body tissues). Induced ionic tissue currents secondary to externally applied, time-varying magnetic fields enter the spine predominantly from its sides, while the currents generated by transcutaneous electrical stimulation penetrate it mainly from its back (or front) side. The motor fibers within the spinal nerves and anterior rootlets are the common targets of paraspinal magnetic stimulation. Different techniques of transcutaneous electrical stimulation either excite the motor fibers in the spinal nerves/anterior rootlets or selectively activate the sensory fibers within the posterior roots/rootlets. Furthermore, longitudinal tracts within the white matter of the spinal cord, descending corticospinal fibers or ascending posterior column fibers, can be directly activated by electrical stimulation. Neural networks of the spinal cord gray matter are exclusively activated trans-synaptically, e.g., through the inputs provided by electrically stimulated sensory fibers. The applications of paraspinal magnetic and transcutaneous electrical stimulation depend on the stimulated neuroanatomy. They include the neurodiagnostic assessment of the functional integrity of lower motoneurons, neurophysiological studies of spinal cord neural networks, the generation of patterned muscle contractions for useful bodily functions, and neuromodulation applications.
"Official" electronic version of the publication (accessed through its Digital Object Identifier - DOI)
Electronic version of the publication:
Created from the Publication Database of the Vienna University of Technology.