With the increasing attention given to neurophysiological substrates of behavior many reports have appeared on both autonomic and central nervous system responsivity in the emotionally disturbed subject. However, little study has been accorded a system often considered ancillary, ie, the peripheral nervous system. This is a report of one aspect of peripheral nerve transmission, motor nerve conduction velocity. The subjects were 100 chronic psychiatric patients of a state domiciliary.
Motor nerve conduction velocity (elbowto-wrist) was sampled for the ulnar nerve bilaterally. The technique was that used in current clinical practice, ie, electrically stimulating the nerve at the epicondylar notch and at the medial aspect of the forearm just above the wrist and eliciting the reflex action potential of the abductor digiti minimi from these two stimulation sites. Velocity is reported in meters per second (m/sec) a value determined by subtracting latency