[abstract] P300 LATENCY REFLECTS THE COGNITIVE SLOWING PRODUCED BY INERT GAS NARCOSIS.

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[abstract] P300 LATENCY REFLECTS THE COGNITIVE SLOWING PRODUCED BY INERT GAS NARCOSIS.

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Title: [abstract] P300 LATENCY REFLECTS THE COGNITIVE SLOWING PRODUCED BY INERT GAS NARCOSIS.
Author: Fowler, B; Hamel, R; Lindeis, A
Abstract: It has recently been demonstrated that the latency of reaction time (RT) and visual P300 are slowed in a parallel dose-related manner by both nitrous oxide (N2O) and hyperbaric nitrogen. P300 is an endogeneous event-related brain potential which is not modality specific and which has been associated with various aspects of cognitive functioning. In particular, the latency of P300 is thought to reflect the time to evaluate a stimulus. These results suggest that P300 indexes the narcotic slowing of information processing related to stimulus evaluation. This proposition was tested in two experiments in which subjects breathed 35% N2O and responded to stimuli presented at two levels of intensity in an oddball paradigm where RT and P300 were collected. In the first experiment tones were presented via earphones and in the second, words on a computer screen. In both experiments RT was slowed by decreased stimulus intensity and by N2O and these effects were additive. Interpreted in terms of Additive Factors Method logic, these results are consistent with the slowed processing model of inert gas narcosis. The critical finding was that the same pattern of additivity emerged for P300 latency which was correlated with RT. N2O also decreased the area under the curve of a slow-wave complex which occurs later in time than P300. It is concluded that P300 is sensitive to the cognitive slowing produced by narcosis. It is proposed that this slowing is not specific to either a particular modality or stage of stimulus evaluation but represents a non-specific gating process controlled by the level of arousal. In this view P300 is not a direct measure of gating and the question arises of whether investigation of event-related potentials earlier in time than P300 may throw light on this mechanism.
Description: Abstract of the Undersea and Hyperbaric Medical Society Annual Scientific Meeting held June 19-23, 1991 at San Diego Princess Resort, San Diego, CA.
URI: http://archive.rubicon-foundation.org/7451
Date: 1991

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  • UHMS Meeting Abstracts
    This is a collection of the published abstracts from the Undersea and Hyperbaric Medical Society (UHMS) annual meetings.

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