Survival of Rabbits After Prolonged Cerebral Ischemia

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Cerebral ischemia was produced by a combination of vascular occlusion and mild systemic hypotension in 2 groups of rabbits. Arterial blood pressure, arterial pH, arterial blood gases, blood glucose and PCV were monitored and recorded before, during and for 3 hours after reperfusion. Return of EEC activity, vasomotor control, spontaneous ventilation and corneal reflex were also recorded. At 4, 8, 12, 24 and 48 hours after reperfusion, the rabbits' neurologic status was assessed according to an arbitrary scale based on motor function. The 2 groups differed in return of reflexes and motor function. Eighty percent of the rabbits ischemic for 20 minutes and 75% of the rabbits ischemic for 30 minutes survived. The graduated response of motor function to cerebral ischemia is attributed to the ventilatory and circulatory support given the rabbits for the first 3 hours after reperfusion. The graduated response of motor function to ischemia supports the suggestion that motor function can be used as an index of neurologic damage.

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