Mechanisms of Blood Flow Regulation in the Skin during Stimulation of the Spinal Cord in Humans
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Changes in the blood flow in the shin skin were observed by laser Doppler flowmetry after transcutaneous electrical spinal cord stimulation (TSCS) by subthreshold bipolar pulses with a frequency of 30 Hz in 12 healthy subjects. It was found that TSCS in the area of the T11 and L1 vertebrae led to a significant increase in skin blood flow. The microcirculation rate increased by more than 85% relative to the baseline at a stimulus intensity of 90% of the motor threshold. Cutaneous blood flow activization by TSCS is implemented mainly through the antidromic stimulation of sensory nerve fibers. Nitric oxide (NO) is an important mediator that contributes to vasodilation and increase in cutaneous blood flow upon TSCS. NO is predominantly of endothelial origin.
This study was supported by the Russian Foundation for Basic Research (project no. 16-29-08277) and Program for Basic Research of the Presidium of the Russian Academy of Sciences no. 1.42.
COMPLIANCE WITH ETHICAL STANDARDS
Conflict of interests. The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.
Statement of compliance with standards of research involving humans as subjects. All procedures performed in studies involving human participants were in accordance with the ethical standards of the institutional and/or national research committee and with the 1964 Helsinki Declaration and its later amendments or comparable ethical standards. Informed consent was obtained from all individual participants involved in the study.
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