Cortical response of the projected-thumb tactile sensation under TENS by MEG


The existence of projected finger territories (PFTs) near the stump provides an essential way to realize the tactile sensation of lost fingers by transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation (TENS). After amputation, the somatosensory cortex corresponding to lost fingers might be invaded by other cortical areas due to cortical plasticity. However, it was seldom observed how the amputees could feel the projected or lost finger tactile sensation in the cerebral cortex under TENS. To answer this question, by using magnetoencephalography (MEG), we investigated the cortical response under TENS of the projected thumb territory and normal thumb with 2 Hz current pulses. One subject with long-term left forearm amputation was recruited. The temporal and spatial characteristics of the activated cortical magnetic signals were analyzed. The Equivalent Current Dipoles (ECDs) corresponding to the strongest strength were mapped in the cerebral cortex, and the current density distribution were clearly illustrated. We found that the latencies at the maximum ECD strength were 60 ± 1.41 ms for the projected thumb and 46 ± 1.25 ms for the normal counterpart. The strongest ECD corresponding to projected thumb was located in the central sulcus near the mirror location of the normal thumb counterpart. And the response strengths of projected thumb cortex were stronger than normal thumb counterpart.

DOI: 10.1109/EMBC.2017.8036873

Cite this paper

@article{Chen2017CorticalRO, title={Cortical response of the projected-thumb tactile sensation under TENS by MEG}, author={Y. Chen and M. N. Li and C. Y. Cao and X. L. Zhu and X. H. Sui}, journal={Conference proceedings : ... Annual International Conference of the IEEE Engineering in Medicine and Biology Society. IEEE Engineering in Medicine and Biology Society. Annual Conference}, year={2017}, volume={2017}, pages={509-512} }