Journal article

A Human Sensory Pathway Connecting the Foot to Ipsilateral Face That Partially Bypasses the Spinal Cord

Morry Silberstein, Andrew K Nunn, Peter D Drummond, Dawn Wong Lit Wan, Janette Alexander, Melinda Millard, Mary P Galea

Frontiers in Neuroscience | FRONTIERS MEDIA SA | Published : 2019


Human sensory transmission from limbs to brain crosses and ascends through the spinal cord. Yet, descriptions exist of ipsilateral sensory transmission as well as transmission after spinal cord transection. To elucidate a novel ipsilateral cutaneous pathway, we measured facial perfusion following painfully-cold water foot immersion in 10 complete spinal cord-injured patients, 10 healthy humans before and after lower thigh capsaicin C-fiber cutaneous conduction blockade, and 10 warm-immersed healthy participants. As in healthy volunteers, ipsilateral facial perfusion in spinal cord injured patients increased significantly. Capsaicin resulted in contralateral increase in perfusion, but only fo..

View full abstract


Awarded by National Health & Medical Research Council of Australia

Funding Acknowledgements

The authors thank National Health & Medical Research Council of Australia (Grant No. 1042643), Moor Instruments UK and SDR Scientific for their generous financial support and assistance with data analysis, Brian Key for editorial advice and Ze'ev Seltzer for help with protocols.