Blood flow and vascular permeability during motor dysfunction in a rabbit model of spinal cord ischemia.
Delayed deterioration of neurological function after central nervous system ischemia is a well-documented clinical problem. The purpose of our study was to elucidate the role of spinal cord blood flow and spinal cord-blood barrier integrity in the evolution of delayed neurological deterioration after transient spinal cord ischemia in rabbits.
Anesthetized rabbits were subjected to lumbar spinal cord ischemia (25 minutes) and variable periods of reperfusion (30 minutes to 48 hours after ischemia). Regional spinal cord blood flow was monitored by carbon-14-labeled iodoantipyrine autoradiography; vascular permeability was assessed by quantitative microhistofluorescence of Evans blue-albumin in frozen sections of spinal cord. Hindlimb motor function was assessed by standard scoring system and tissue edema by wet/dry weight method.
Hindlimb motor function indicated complete paralysis during ischemia and partial gradual recovery upon reperfusion (up to 8 hours), followed by progressive deterioration to severe deficits over 48 hours. Severe vascular permeability disruption was noticed early (30 minutes) after reperfusion, but almost complete recovery reestablished at 8 hours was followed by a secondary progressive increase in vascular permeability. Blood flow was reduced by 20-30% (p less than 0.01) 4 hours after ischemia in the gray matter, but hyperemia (200-300%, p less than 0.01) was observed 12-24 hours after ischemia. Spinal cord water content increased by 5.7% (p less than 0.05) 24 hours after ischemia.
This study demonstrates that delayed neurological and motor deterioration after spinal cord ischemia is associated with severe progressive breakdown of spinal cord-blood barrier integrity that develops late (hours) after the injury. Our data suggest that no ischemic insult in early or late reperfusion is associated with delayed motor deterioration.
- Copyright © 1992 by American Heart Association