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June 1971

Drug Effects on the Medial Vestibular Nucleus

Author Affiliations

Iowa City
From the Department of Otolaryngology and Maxillofacial Surgery University of Iowa, Iowa City.

Arch Otolaryngol. 1971;93(6):581-589. doi:10.1001/archotol.1971.00770060883007

The effect of dimenhydrinate (Dramamine) and diazepam (Valium) on the spontaneous neuronal activity of the medial vestibular nucleus in the cat was investigated. For this purpose, only tonic vestibular type I or II neurons were selected stereotaxically and then typed by angular acceleration. Spike frequencies were calculated with an on-line instrument computer and evaluated by statistical methods. Dimenhydrinate has no effect on the vestibular system (at second-order neuron or below) at physiologic levels of the drug. Diazepam depresses vestibular activity at physiologic levels of the drug. The site of action of diazepam in producing this effect could be on the vestibular system itself, or more likely in depressing the facilitatory system of the reticular formation, with which it has direct connections.

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