Increased electrical nerve stimulation threshold of the sciatic nerve in patients with diabetic foot gangrene: A prospective parallel cohort study


    loading  Checking for direct PDF access through Ovid

Abstract

CONTEXTPeripheral neuropathy may affect nerve conduction in patients with diabetes mellitus.OBJECTIVEThis study was designed to test the hypothesis that the electrical stimulation threshold for a motor response of the sciatic nerve is increased in patients suffering from diabetic foot gangrene compared to non-diabetic patients.DESIGNProspective non-randomised trial with two parallel groups.SETTINGTwo university-affiliated hospitals.PARTICIPANTSPatients scheduled for surgical treatment of diabetic foot gangrene (n = 30) and non-diabetic patients (n = 30) displaying no risk factors for neuropathy undergoing orthopaedic foot or ankle surgery.MAIN OUTCOME MEASUREThe minimum current intensity required to elicit a typical motor response (dorsiflexion or eversion of the foot) at a pulse width of 0.1 ms and a stimulation frequency of 1 Hz when the needle tip was positioned under ultrasound control directly adjacent to the peroneal component of the sciatic nerve.RESULTSThe non-diabetic patients were younger [64 (SD 12) vs. 74 (SD 7) years] and predominantly female (23 vs. 8). The geometric mean of the motor stimulation threshold was 0.26 [95% confidence interval (95% CI) 0.24 to 0.28] mA in non-diabetic and 1.9 (95% CI 1.6 to 2.2) mA in diabetic patients. The geometric mean of the electrical stimulation threshold was significantly (P < 0.001) increased by a factor of 7.2 (95% CI 6.1 to 8.4) in diabetic compared to non-diabetic patients.CONCLUSIONThe electrical stimulation threshold for a motor response of the sciatic nerve is increased by a factor of 7.2 in patients with diabetic foot gangrene, which might hamper nerve identification.

    loading  Loading Related Articles