Suppression of parasympathetic reflex vasodilatation in the lower lip of the cat by isoflurane, propofol, ketamine and pentobarbital: Implications for mechanisms underlying the production of anaesthesia

Yutaka Ito, Minoru Sato, Naofumi Iwatsuki, Hiroshi Izumi, Keishiro Karita

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

15 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

We have compared the effects of isoflurane, propofol, ketamine and pentobarbital on parasympathetic reflex vasodilatation to investigate their involvement in GABA-mediated synaptic inhibition, enhancement of which is thought to underlie the action of many anaesthetic agents. In cats anaesthetized with urethane-α-chloralose, parasympathetic reflex vasodilatation in the ipsilateral lower lip was elicited by electrical stimulation of the central cut end of the lingual nerve. Isoflurane and pentobarbital both produced marked dose-dependent inhibition of this vasodilator response. In contrast, propofol and ketamine had no effect on parasympathetic reflex vasodilatation. Administration of a GABA antagonist (picrotoxin) reversed the inhibition produced by isoflurane (previous results) and pentobarbital (present study). Our results suggest that isoflurane and pentobarbitone inhibit parasympathetic reflex vasodilatation via a GABA-mediated mechanism, but that propofol and ketamine have no such effect. Our results with propofol cast doubt on its presumed mechanism of action as an anaesthetic.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)563-568
Number of pages6
JournalBritish Journal of Anaesthesia
Volume81
Issue number4
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1998 Jan 1

Keywords

  • Anaesthetics i.v., ketamine
  • Anaesthetics i.v., propofol
  • Anaesthetics volatile, isoflurane
  • Brain, GABA
  • Hypnotics barbiturate, pentobarbital
  • Parasympathetic nervous system

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Anesthesiology and Pain Medicine

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