Korean J Physiol Pharmacol.  2010 Oct;14(5):291-297. 10.4196/kjpp.2010.14.5.291.

Effects of Isoflurane Anesthesia on Post-Anesthetic Sleep-Wake Architectures in Rats

  • 1Department of Pharmacology, School of Medicine, Kyungpook National University, Daegu 700-422, Korea. dvmjang@hanmail.net
  • 2Brain Science and Engineering Institute, Kyungpook National University, Daegu 700-422, Korea.
  • 3Department of Surgery, College of Veterinary Medicine, Kyungpook National University, Daegu 702-701, Korea.


The sleep homeostatic response significantly affects the state of anesthesia. In addition, sleep recovery may occur during anesthesia, either via a natural sleep-like process to occur or via a direct restorative effect. Little is known about the effects of isoflurane anesthesia on sleep homeostasis. We investigated whether 1) isoflurane anesthesia could provide a sleep-like process, and 2) the depth of anesthesia could differently affect the post-anesthesia sleep response. Nine rats were treated for 2 hours with ad libitum sleep (Control), sleep deprivation (SD), and isoflurane anesthesia with delta-wave-predominant state (ISO-1) or burst suppression pattern-predominant state (ISO-2) with at least a 1-week interval. Electroencephalogram and electromyogram were recorded and sleep-wake architecture was evaluated for 4 hours after each treatment. In the post-treatment period, the duration of transition to slow-wave-sleep decreased but slow wave sleep (SWS) increased in the SD group, but no sleep stages were significantly changed in ISO-1 and ISO-2 groups compared to Control. Different levels of anesthesia did not significantly affect the post-anesthesia sleep responses, but the deep level of anesthesia significantly delayed the latency to sleep compared to Control. The present results indicate that a natural sleep-like process likely occurs during isoflurane anesthesia and that the post-anesthesia sleep response occurs irrespective to the level of anesthesia.


Isoflurane anesthesia; Sleep-wake architecture; Sleep deprivation; Slow wave sleep; Rat
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