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September 1932

EFFECT OF HYPERVENTILATION ON THE EXCITABILITY OF THE MOTOR CORTEX IN CATS: AN EXPERIMENTAL STUDY

Author Affiliations

Knight Research Fund Fellow.; NEW HAVEN, CONN.

From the Laboratory of Neurophysiology, Yale University.

Arch NeurPsych. 1932;28(3):571-585. doi:10.1001/archneurpsyc.1932.02240030091004
Abstract

It has long been known that minor symptoms of hyperexcitability of neuromuscular activity, such as twitchings of the muscles, diminution of the threshold of motor nerves, etc., designated under the syndrome of tetany, result from hyperventilation. In 1924, Rosett,1 in this country, and, almost simultaneously, Foerster,2 in Germany, applied this method of investigation to the study of diseases of the central nervous system, especially to epilepsy. This proved to be a successful conception, as both authors were able to show that hyperventilation in epileptic patients may produce marked symptoms of motor and sensory excitation and even true epileptic seizures. Foerster stated that he observed epileptiform seizures in 55 per cent of his patients. Many subsequent investigations confirmed this interesting observation, and the results were at variance only in respect to the percentage of cases in which epileptic seizures followed forced voluntary hyperventilation. Other clinicians have been unable to

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