Neuromuscular excitation, which includes pain and involuntary muscle contractions, is a well-known adverse side effect of electroablation therapies. Reducing neuromuscular excitation while maintaining the efficiency of ablation may reduce or eliminate the need for local anesthetics and muscle relaxants.
With conventional “long” stimuli, nerve excitation threshold is 10-20 times lower than electroporation threshold, hence the volume of tissue where excitation threshold is reached is much larger than ablation volume. In contrast, nsEP thresholds of excitation and electroporation thresholds and the excitation and ablation volumes should be similar.
We expect to demonstrate nsEP advantage by comparing nerve excitation and ablation thresholds for pulse durations from milli- to nanoseconds. We will also explore if applying bipolar nsEP and MHz pulse compression could provide additional benefits by maintaining the ablation efficiency and reducing the excitation volume around it.