Single-trial averaging improves the physiological interpretation of contact heat evoked potentials.

Jutzeler, Catherine R; Linde, Lukas D; Rosner, Jan; Hubli, Michèle; Curt, Armin; Kramer, John L K (2021). Single-trial averaging improves the physiological interpretation of contact heat evoked potentials. NeuroImage, 225(117473), p. 117473. Elsevier 10.1016/j.neuroimage.2020.117473

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Laser and contact heat evoked potentials (LEPs and CHEPs, respectively) provide an objective measure of pathways and processes involved in nociception. The majority of studies analyzing LEP or CHEP outcomes have done so based on conventional, across-trial averaging. With this approach, evoked potential components are potentially confounded by latency jitter and ignore relevant information contained within single trials. The current study addressed the advantage of analyzing nociceptive evoked potentials based on responses to noxious stimulations within each individual trial. Single-trial and conventional averaging were applied to data previously collected in 90 healthy subjects from 3 stimulation locations on the upper limb. The primary analysis focused on relationships between single and across-trial averaged CHEP outcomes (i.e., N2P2 amplitude and N2 and P2 latencies) and subject characteristics (i.e., age, sex, height, and rating of perceived intensity), which were examined by way of linear mixed model analysis. Single-trial averaging lead to larger N2P2 amplitudes and longer N2 and P2 latencies. Age and ratings of perceived intensity were the only subject level characteristics associated with CHEPs outcomes that significantly interacted with the method of analysis (conventional vs single-trial averaging). The strength of relationships for age and ratings of perceived intensity, measured by linear fit, were increased for single-trial compared to conventional across-trial averaged CHEP outcomes. By accounting for latency jitter, single-trial averaging improved the associations between CHEPs and physiological outcomes and should be incorporated as a standard analytical technique in future studies.

Item Type:

Journal Article (Original Article)


04 Faculty of Medicine > Department of Head Organs and Neurology (DKNS) > Clinic of Neurology

UniBE Contributor:

Rosner, Jan


600 Technology > 610 Medicine & health








Chantal Kottler

Date Deposited:

09 Nov 2020 15:58

Last Modified:

17 Mar 2021 19:48

Publisher DOI:


PubMed ID:


Uncontrolled Keywords:

Ageing Contact heat Evoked potentials Pain Single-trial averaging




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