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Beck-Broichsitter, Be.; Becker, St.; Lamia, A.; Fregnan, F.; Geuna, S.; Sinis, N. (2014)
Publisher: Hindawi Publishing Corporation
Journal: BioMed Research International
Languages: English
Types: Article
Subjects: R, Research Article, Medicine, Article Subject
The babysitter-procedure might offer an alternative when nerve reconstruction is delayed in order to overcome muscular atrophy due to denervation. In this study we aimed to show that a sensomotoric babysitter-procedure after median nerve injury is capable of preserving irreversible muscular atrophy. The median nerve of 20 female Wistar rats was denervated. 10 animals received a sensory protection with the N. cutaneous brachii. After six weeks the median nerve was reconstructed by autologous nerve grafting from the contralateral median nerve in the babysitter and the control groups. Grasping tests measured functional recovery over 15 weeks. At the end of the observation period the weight of the flexor digitorum sublimis muscle was determined. The median nerve was excised for histological examinations. Muscle weight (P < 0.0001) was significantly superior in the babysitter group compared to the control group at the end of the study. The histological evaluation revealed a significantly higher diameter of axons (P = 0.0194), nerve fiber (P = 0.0409), and nerve surface (P = 0.0184) in the babysitter group. We conclude that sensory protection of a motor nerve is capable of preserving muscule weight and we may presume that metabolism of the sensory nerve was sufficient to keep the target muscle's weight and vitality.
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