Chronaxie calculated from current-duration and voltage-duration data

J. Holsheimer, E.A. Dijkstra, Hilde Demeulemeester, Bart Nuttin

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    To determine the rheobase and the chronaxie of excitable cells from strength–duration curves both constant-current pulses and constant-voltage pulses are applied. Since the complex impedance of the electrode-tissue interface varies with both the pulsewidth and the stimulation voltage, chronaxie values estimated from voltage–duration measurements will differ from the proper values as determined from current–duration measurements. To allow a comparison of chronaxie values obtained by the two stimulation methods, voltage–duration curves were measured in human subjects with a deep brain stimulation electrode implanted, while the current and the load impedance of the stimulation circuit were determined in vitro as a function of both stimulation voltage and pulsewidth. Chronaxie values calculated from voltage–duration data were shown to be 30–40% below those estimated from current–duration data. It was also shown that in the normal range of stimulation amplitudes (up to 7 V) the load impedance increases almost linearly with the pulsewidth. This result led us to present a simple method to convert voltage–duration data into current–duration data, thereby reducing the error in the calculated chronaxie values to ≈6%. For this purpose voltage–duration data have to be measured for pulses up to 10–20 times the expected chronaxie.
    Original languageUndefined
    Pages (from-to)45-50
    Number of pages6
    JournalJournal of neuroscience methods
    Issue number97
    Publication statusPublished - 2000


    • METIS-111770
    • Rheobase
    • Deep Brain Stimulation
    • Current–duration measurements
    • IR-74311
    • Chronaxie
    • Voltage–duration measurements

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