Objective: In an attempt to analyze whether MEP can serve as a valid measure for evaluating neurological dysfunction in multiple sclerosis (MS), we related MEP to clinical and MRI measures. Methods: Transcranial magnetic stimulation was applied in 52 MS patients to determine the central motor conduction time (CMCT) to the extremities. We calculated Z-scores for each CMCT (Zcmct) corrected for height. All patients underwent two clinical measurements and a MRI scan, of which T1 and T2 brain lesion volumes, brain volume, spinal cord volume and the number of T2 spinal cord lesions were derived. Results: The clinical measurements correlated significantly with various Zcmct (Spearman correlation coefficients ranged from 0.29 to 0.53; p < 0.05). The number of spinal cord lesions, brain T1 and T2 lesion volume and spinal cord volume correlated with various Zcmct (r = 0.31-0.53; p < 0.05). Linear regression analysis revealed that the clinical measurements were explained by Zcmct left leg and T1 lesion volume (adjusted R2 = 0.38). For one clinical measurement the number of spinal cord lesions was also included (adjusted R2 = 0.43). Conclusion: We found a relation between MEP, brain and spinal cord MRI measures, and two clinical measures. Moreover, a model for explaining disability in MS revealed that MEP measures provide information in addition to MRI measures. Significance: This study suggests that MEP is a measure that might adequately reflect pathology and neurological dysfunction in MS. © 2007 International Federation of Clinical Neurophysiology.
Kalkers, N. F., Strijers, R. L. M., Jasperse, M. M. S., Neacsu, V., Geurts, J. J. G., Barkhof, F., ... Stam, C. J. (2007). Motor evoked potential: A reliable and objective measure to document the functional consequences of multiple sclerosis? Relation to disability and MRI. Clinical Neurophysiology, 118(6), 1332-1340. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.clinph.2007.02.018