Long-term recovery of muscle strength after denervation in the fibular division of the sciatic nerve.

Muscle & Nerve

PubMedID: 26970540

Stefancic M, Vidmar G, Blagus R. Long-term recovery of muscle strength after denervation in the fibular division of the sciatic nerve. Muscle Nerve. 2016;54(4):702-8.
INTRODUCTION
The probability and degree of muscle recovery after lesions of long peripheral nerves have not been assessed quantitatively.

METHODS
Twelve adults with closed injuries of the fibular division of the sciatic nerve with complete denervation of associated muscles were followed-up for 2-10 years. The onset of reinnervation was detected electromyographically. Calf circumference and maximum voluntary isometric contraction (MVIC) of foot dorsiflexion were measured on both sides during 2-4 visits.

RESULTS
Reinnervation occurred in 11 patients after an average of 13 months. MVIC on the affected side was 2%-27% of that on the unaffected side (average 11%) and remained stable for the following 2-3 years. Correlations and mixed-model regressions confirmed that the degree of recovery was negatively associated with duration of denervation.

CONCLUSIONS
Reinnervation occurs in about 90% of patients within about 1 year. About 10% of baseline dorsiflexion strength is permanently recovered, which is functionally relevant. Muscle Nerve, 2016 Muscle Nerve 54: -, 2016 Muscle Nerve 54: 702-708, 2016.