Brain retraction and induced hypotension are surgical adjuncts capable of compromising cerebral blood flow. To evaluate their effects upon brain function, cortical evoked potentials, neurological status and cortical histological changes were determined as a function of graded levels of brain retractor and systemic perfusion pressure in the dog. Somatosensory evoked potentials recorded from the site of application of brain retraction showed a decrement as a function of both the amount of retraction pressure and the systemic perfusion pressure. An electrode distant from the retractor site showed similar, though reduced and more variable changes in amplitude. For higher levels of brain retractor pressure, induced hypotension to 50 mm Hg systemic perfusion pressure produced greater reductions in evoked potentials than in normotensive subjects. It was demonstrated that a reduction of 50% of the evoked potential amplitude after sixty minutes brain retraction signaled, with high probability, the occurrence of postoperative sensory and/or motor deficits and cortical histopathology. It was concluded that cortical evoked potentials represent a reliable indicator of the functional effects produced by applied cortical retraction pressure at several levels of systemic perfusion pressure. It was suggested that the recording of evoked potentials would prove most useful during neurosurgical procedures employing induced hypotension and brain retraction.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Clinical Neurology
- Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine
- Advanced and Specialized Nursing