Clinical neurophysiology and imaging of nerve injuries: preoperative diagnostic work-up and postoperative monitoring
- Autori: Gagliardo, A.; Toia, F.; Maggì, F.; Mariolo, A.V.; Cillino, M.; Moschella, F.
- Anno di pubblicazione: 2015
- Tipologia: Articolo in rivista (Articolo in rivista)
- OA Link: http://hdl.handle.net/10447/206659
Peripheral nerve injuries are a heterogeneous group of lesions that may occurs secondary to various causes. Several different classifications have been used to describe the pathophysiological mechanisms leading to the clinical deficit, from simple and reversible compression‑induced demyelination, to complete transection of nerve axons. Neurophysiological data localize, quantify, and qualify (demyelination vs. axonal loss) the clinical and subclinical deficits. High‑resolution ultrasound can demonstrate the morphological extent of nerve damage, fascicular echotexture (epineurium vs. perineurium, focal alteration of the cross‑section of the nerve, any neuromas, etc.), and the surrounding tissues. High field magnetic resonance imaging provides high contrast neurography by fat suppression sequences and shows structural connectivity through the use of diffusion‑weighted sequences. The aim of this review is to provide clinical guidelines for the diagnosis of nerve injuries, and the rationale for instrumental evaluation in the preoperative and postoperative periods. While history and clinical approach guide neurophysiological examination, nerve conduction and electromyography studies provide functional information on conduction slowing and denervation to assist in monitoring the onset of re‑innervation. High‑resolution nerve imaging complements neurophysiological data and allows direct visualization of the nerve injury while providing insight into its cause and facilitating surgical treatment planning. Indications and limits of each instrumental examination are discussed.