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Year : 2021  |  Volume : 38  |  Issue : 4  |  Page : 226-233

The effect of cold on the trigeminal reflexes

1 Department of Neurology, Kartal Dr. Lütfi Kırdar City Hospital, İstanbul, Turkey
2 Department of Neurology, İstanbul University Cerrahpaşa Faculty of Medicine, İstanbul, Turkey

Correspondence Address:
Rahsan Inan
Department of Neurology, Kartal Dr. Lütfi Kırdar City Hospital, İstanbul
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/nsn.nsn_220_20

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Objective: Effects of muscle cooling on the spinal stretch and monosynaptic reflexes have been studied to describe the properties of Group I and II afferents of muscle spindles. Masseter muscle differs from extremity muscles in structural and numerical features of the muscle spindles. The aim of this study was to examine the muscle spindle afferent features of masseter muscle by applying cold to understand the role of Group I and II afferents in reflexes of masseter. Patients and Methods: We included 12 healthy subjects (7 females and 5 males) in the study. Masseter inhibitory reflex (MIR), jaw tendon reflex (JTR), trigeminal motor evoked potential (MEP), and trigeminal somatosensory evoked potential (SEP) were studied before and after cold application. Left masseter muscle was cooled down to 18°C. We compared the data obtained before and after cold application. Results: After cold application, the mean total duration of MIR was shortened and it was absent in four subjects. The mean amplitude of JTR was higher after cold application (P = 0.018) without any significant change in latency. The mean latency of MEP was delayed without any change in amplitude (P = 0.003). There was no significant difference in SEPs. Conclusions: Changes observed in MIR, JTR, and MEP could not be ascribed to any specific type of muscle spindle afferents. Delayed mean reflex latencies were attributed to the effect of cold on nerve conduction. Summation of peripheral cold and pain receptor features, spindle afferents, and cortical mechanisms might have caused cold-associated changes.

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