Electrode design for high frequency block: Effect of bipolar separation on block thresholds and the onset response.
Journal - Conference proceedings : ... Annual International Conference of the IEEE Engineering in Medicine and Biology Society. IEEE Engineering in Medicine and Biology Society. Conference (United States )
The delivery of high frequency alternating currents (HFAC) to peripheral nerves has been shown to produce a rapid and reversible nerve conduction block at the site of the electrode, and holds therapeutic promise for diseases associated with undesired or pathological neural activity. It has been known since 1939 that the configuration of an electrode used for nerve block can impact the quality of the block, but to date no formal study of the impact of electrode design on high frequency nerve block has been performed. Using a mammalian small animal model, it is demonstrated that the contact separation distance for a bipolar nerve cuff electrode can impact two important factors related to high frequency nerve block: the amplitude of HFAC required to block the nerve (block threshold), and the degree to which the transient "onset response" which always occurs when HFAC is first applied to peripheral nerves, is present. This study suggests that a bipolar electrode with a separation distance of 1.0 mm minimizes current delivery while producing high frequency block with a minimal onset response in the rat sciatic nerve.