Somatosensory evoked fields in comatose survivors after severe traumatic brain injury

Masaki Iwasaki, Nobukazu Nakasato, Akitake Kanno, Keisaku Hatanaka, Ken ichi Nagamatsu, Yoshihide Nagamine, Takashi Yoshimoto

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

16 Citations (Scopus)


Objective: To evaluate the cortical function quantitatively in patients in the chronic phase of severe traumatic brain injury. Methods: Thirteen patients with severe traumatic brain injury due to traffic accident followed by persistent consciousness disturbance and disability were studied. Somatosensory evoked magnetic fields (SEFs) for unilateral median nerve stimulation were measured using a whole-head magnetoencephalography system. The latency and electrical current dipole (ECD) moment for the N20m, P30m, N45m and P60m components were calculated and compared with those of 14 age-matched healthy adults. Results: The peak latency of N20m was longer (P < 0.05) and those of P30m and N45m were shorter (P < 0.01) in the patients than in normal adults. The ECD moment of N20m and P30m was smaller and that of N45m and P60m was larger in the patients than in normal adults (P < 0.01). Conclusions: These results can be explained by the hypothesis that diffuse brain injury induces decreased and delayed input of the somatosensory afferent and compensational amplification of the response in the primary somatosensory cortex. Middle-latency SEFs may be applicable as a cortical functional measure for patients with severe traumatic brain injury.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)205-211
Number of pages7
JournalClinical Neurophysiology
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2001


  • Consciousness disturbance
  • Diffuse axonal injury
  • Magnetoencephalography
  • Somatosensory evoked potentials
  • Traumatic brain injury

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Sensory Systems
  • Neurology
  • Clinical Neurology
  • Physiology (medical)


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