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The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.



(also electronarcosis), general anesthesia produced by sending an electric current through the brain. The narcotic action of an electric current supplied by pulses was first tested by the French scientist S. Leduc, who tested the procedure on himself in 1902. Modern-day electroanesthesia requires the use of pulsating (at a frequency ranging from 100 Hz to 6 kHz), sinusoidal, or interference currents of 10 to 200 milliamperes. Electrodes are placed on the frontal and occipital regions of the head. The narcotic effect is due to a slowing of the activity of the subcortical structures of the brain that perceive pain.

The side effects of electroanesthesia, which include muscle spasm and impaired circulation and respiration, made application of the procedure difficult in the past. However, advances in anesthesiology have made it possible to use electroanesthesia in combination with other anesthetic agents. The advantages of the procedure include the absence of toxicity, the portability of the apparatus, and the rapidity in which loss of sensation is achieved and consciousness is regained.

In 1966 specialists in electroanesthesia founded the International Society for Electrosleep and Electroanesthesia.


Eleclronarkoz v khirurgii. Tashkent, 1966.


The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.