Ultrasound-guided near-nerve neurography is a new tool that can be used to assess nerve regeneration before reinnervation occurs. In this study, ultrasound-guided near-nerve measurements were validated against axon diameter counts in rabbits during a 15-week regeneration period after a crush lesion of their peroneal nerve. The course of the nerve was determined ultrasonically, and the active near-nerve needle electrode was maneuvered just next to the nerve under ultrasound guidance. Measured action potentials were compared with axon diameter counts from histological sections of these same nerves. A moderate to good positive correlation was found, which reached a maximum of 0.7 at a cut-off of 3 μm, corresponding to the minimal size of the myelinated axons. Our results suggest that, following a similar validation study in humans, ultrasound-guided near-nerve neurography may be clinically useful when early evaluation of nerve activity is needed.

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Keywords Morphometry, Nerve conduction studies, Nerve regeneration, Rabbit, Ultrasonography
Persistent URL dx.doi.org/10.1002/mus.21405, hdl.handle.net/1765/24105
van Neck, J.W, de Kool, B.S, Hekking-Weijma, J.M, Walbeehm, E.T, Visser, G.H, & Blok, J.H. (2009). Histological validation of ultrasound-guided neurography in early nerve regeneration. Muscle & Nerve, 40(6), 967–975. doi:10.1002/mus.21405