Succinylcholine-stimulated muscle tensions following botulinum injection in the domestic cat

Patrick J. Dennehy, Robert W. Lingua, Kam F. Li, Eleut Hernandez, William Feuer

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Scopus citations


Succinylcholine (SCh) selectively stimulates, and can therefore selectively assay, the multiple innervated (MI) fiber system of the extraocular muscles. Since botulinum-A toxin has been observed to induce changes in eye position in humans. SCh was used to assess the effect of botulinum-A on the SCh-sensitive MI fibers of extraocular muscles. Intravenous SCh infusion (40 μg-1 kg-1 min-1) was performed in the anesthetized domestic cat. Thirty-eight infusions were performed in 19 normal controls, measuring the peak tensions generated in the four horizontal and four vertical rectus muscles. Succinylcholine-stimulated muscle tensions (SSMT) were then repeated in nine animals, 4 weeks and 10 weeks following injection of botulinum-A toxin into both medial rectus muscles. Mean peak SSMTs were unchanged at 4 and 10 weeks following botulinum injection when compared to controls. We propose that botulinum chemo-denervation has no acute or chronic effect on the MI SCh-sensitive muscle fibers of the medial recti of the domestic cat. This lack of effect on the postsynaptic MI fibers indirectly supports light and electron microscopic studies which show changes predominantly in the singly innervated (SI), rather than the MI fibers following botulinum injection. Mean peak SSMTs were also greater for medial and superior rectus muscles compared to lateral and inferior recti respectively, suggesting a greater number or proportion of MI fibers in medial and superior recti.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)445-449
Number of pages5
JournalExperimental Eye Research
Issue number4
StatePublished - Apr 1991
Externally publishedYes


  • botulinum
  • extraocular muscles
  • strabismus
  • succinylcholine

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Ophthalmology
  • Sensory Systems
  • Cellular and Molecular Neuroscience


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