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ssep (somatosensory evoked potentials)
ssep measure the dorsal columns (pathways lying on the back of the spinal cord) of the spinal cord.  This is helpful during surgery, as an assurance that the spinal cord is intact.  When operating around and in the spinal cord, a patient cannot tell us whether he/she is experiencing injury to the spinal cord which might affect the upper or lower extremities, but ssep's may give us a warning.  A shock is given in the distribution of a peripheral nerve, and the conduction is measured as it travels  to the brain.  To measure ssep's, electrodes are attached to the extremities and scalp.

 

 

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