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J Clin Neurophysiol. 1998 May;15(3):227-34.

Generators of short latency human somatosensory-evoked potentials recorded over the spine and scalp.

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  • 1Department of Neurology, University of California, Davis Medical Center, Sacramento, USA.


Somatosensory evoked potentials (SEPs) are most commonly obtained after stimulation of the median nerve and the posterior tibial nerve. SEPs reflect conduction of the afferent volley along the peripheral nerve, dorsal columns, and medial lemniscal pathways to the primary somatosensory cortex. Short-latency SEPs are recorded over the spine and scalp. After posterior tibial nerve stimulation, the following waveforms are recorded: N22, W3, the dorsal column volley, N29, P31, N34, and P37. After median nerve stimulation, the brachial plexus volley, dorsal column volley (N11), N13, P14, N18, N20, and P22 potentials are recorded. We discuss the current state of knowledge about the generators of these SEPs. Such information is crucial for proper interpretation of SEP abnormalities.

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