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Low frequency electrical impulses reduce atherosclerosis in cholesterol fed rabbits

Valeri S. Chekanov

Med Sci Monit 2003; 9(8): BR302-309

ID: 13090

Background:This investigation studied whether low frequency electrical impulses (EI) induce or prevent development of new atherosclerotic plaque in previously diseased vessels.Material/Methods:In all rabbits, an electrode was sutured to the left psoas major muscle close to the upper part of the abdominal aorta (AA), and a pacemaker was implanted on the opposite side of the AA just below diaphragm. Group 1 received a high cholesterol diet (HCD) to induce atherosclerosis but no EI (control). Euthanasia followed after 3 weeks (series I), 8 weeks (series II) and 11 weeks (series III) of HCD. In series IV animals received HCD alone for 3 weeks then EI was added to the HCD for another 8 weeks (weeks 4–11) at a rate of 30 impulses per minute (IPM) at 3V. Euthanasia followed after 11 weeks. Atherosclerotic thickness grades were assigned using a 0 (low) to 4 (high) grading system, and the surface area involved in disease was calculated.Results:In control rabbits, after 11 weeks of HCD atherosclerotic thickness grade in lower abdominal aorta was 1.68I0.25. In rabbits exposed to EI (30 IPM at 3V) this grade was 0.5±0.37 (p

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