Temperature-dependent hysteresis in somatosensory and auditory evoked potentials

Omkar N. Markand, Carroll Warren, Gunwant S. Mallik, Christopher J. Williams

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

39 Scopus citations


Fourteen adult patients undergoing open heart surgery under induced hypothermia had median nerve, short-latency somatosensory evoked potentials (SSEPs) recorded during cooling (from 36°C to 19°C) and subsequent rewarming. Similar data on another group of patients who had brain-stem auditory evoked potentials (BAEPs) were also analyzed. Hypothermia produced increased latencies of the major SSEP and BAEP components and the latencies returned to normal with subsequent warming. The temperature-latency relationship during the cooling phase was significantly different from that during the warming phase. For SSEP components the temperature-latency relationship was linear during cooling and curvilinear during warming, whereas for BAEP it was curvilinear both during cooling and warming. Furthermore, the regression curves were different during the two phases of temperature manipulation, particularly for temperatures below 30°C both for SSEP and BAEP components. At the onset of warming there was an initial exaggerated warming response on the evoked potential (EP) latencies and amplitude of the EP components. The temperature-latency regression curves were uniformly less steep during the warming phase compared to those during cooling. These findings suggest the existence of hysteresis in the relationship between temperature and EP latencies. The latencies at a given temperature below 30°C depend on whether that temperature is reached during cooling or during warming.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)425-435
Number of pages11
JournalElectroencephalography and Clinical Neurophysiology/ Evoked Potentials
Issue number6
StatePublished - Jan 1 1990


  • Auditory evoked potentials
  • Hypothermia
  • Hysteresis
  • Somatosensory evoked potentials

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Clinical Neurology
  • Neuroscience(all)

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