Monday, 11 May 2015 09:50

Comparison of results between chitosan hollow tube and autologous nerve graft in reconstruction of peripheral nerve defect: An experimental study

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  • This study evaluated a chitosan tube for regeneration of the injured peripheral nerve in a rodent transected sciatic nerve model in comparison to autologous nerve graft repair.


  • Chitosan hollow tube was used to bridge a 10-mm gap between the proximal and distal ends in 11 rats. In the control group, an end-to-end coaptation of 10-mm long autologous nerve graft was performed in 10 rats for nerve reconstruction.


  • SFI showed an insignificant advantage to the autologous group both at 30 days (P = 0.177) and at 90 days post procedure (P  = 0.486). Somato-sensory evoked potentials (SSEP) and compound muscle action potentials (CMAP) tests showed similar results between chitosan tube (group 1) and autologous (group 2) groups with no statistically significant differences. Both groups presented the same pattern of recovery with 45% in group 1 and 44% in group 2 (P = 0.96) showing SSEP activity at 30 days. At 90 days most rats showed SSEP activity (91% vs.80% respectively, P  = 0.46). The CMAP also demonstrated no statistically significant differences in latency (1.39 ms in group 1 vs. 1.63 ms in group 2; P = 0.48) and amplitude (6.28 mv vs. 6.43 mv respectively; P  = 0.8). Ultrasonography demonstrated tissue growth inside the chitosan tube. Gastrocnemius muscle weight showed no statistically significant difference. Histomorphometry of the distal sciatic nerve, 90 days post reconstructive procedure, showed similar number of myelinated fibers and size parameters in both groups (P ≥ 0.05).


  • Chitosan hollow tube used for peripheral nerve reconstruction of rat sciatic nerve showed similar results in comparison to autologous nerve grafting.

© 2015 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. Microsurgery, 2015.

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