Propagation of the electrical impulse in reversible unilateral ureteral obstruction as determined at high electrophysiological resolution

Fayez T. Hammad, Wim J. Lammers, Betty Stephen, Loay Lubbad

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

10 Citations (Scopus)


Purpose We investigated the propagation of electrical impulses in a reversible, complete or partial unilateral ureteral obstruction model in vivo. Materials and Methods In Wistar rats the left mid ureter was completely (8) or partially (7) occluded and released after 24 hours. We recorded electrical activity of the left and right ureter before, during and after obstruction at different stages up to 2 weeks after obstruction using a high resolution, 64 extracellular electrode probe. Results Complete obstruction in the left proximal ureter caused an immediate increase in frequency from a mean ± SEM of 14.8 ± 1.3 to 18.6 ± 1.7 per minute (p <0.05), followed by a 1.4 ± 0.9 per minute decrease (p <0.001). Within the first 2 days after reversal velocity gradually decreased from 1.82 ± 0.12 to 0.79 ± 0.17 cm per second (p <0.001). Release of obstruction gradually restored frequency and velocity, which returned to baseline at 2 weeks. Generally the alterations in rats with complete and partial obstruction were similar but they were less marked in those with partial obstruction. Distal to the obstruction site the impulses disappeared (38%) or propagated retrograde (43%) at some stage in the post-obstruction period. These abnormal impulse propagations also gradually disappeared in the post-obstruction stage. Conclusions After complete or partial ureteral obstruction there were immediate, significant changes in the propagation of electrical impulses in the proximal and distal left ureter, which were generally less marked after partial than after complete obstruction. Reversal of obstruction resulted in the gradual disappearance of this abnormality in 2 weeks.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)744-750
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Urology
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Feb 2011


  • electrophysiology
  • rats, Wistar
  • ureter
  • ureteral obstruction

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Urology


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