The silent period in patients with chronic renal failure undergoing hemodialysis
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Silent period was evaluated in 20 adult male patients with chronic renal failure undergoing hemodialysis. Readings were obtained by supramaximal stimulus to the median nerve, during maximum isometric effort of the abductor pollicis brevis muscle against resistance. Two types of abnormalities were observed, motor neuron hypoexcitability with elongated silent period, and motor neuron hyperexcitability with reduction or absence of silent period. Some abnormalities are probably linked with dialysis duration, but show no correlation to presence or absence of peripheral neuropathy. The silent period alterations described in this study could possibly correlate with some other clinical feature frequently seen in patients with chronic renal failure such as hypereflexia of the deep tendon reflexes.
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