Is Standardization of Nerve Graft Groups Necessary for Experimental Studies?

ÖZBEK S., Ozyurtlu M., Kurt M. A., Noyan B.

TURKIYE KLINIKLERI TIP BILIMLERI DERGISI, vol.31, no.6, pp.1532-1543, 2011 (SCI-Expanded) identifier identifier


Objective: Experimental studies regarding nerve regeneration use a number of methods to compose a nerve graft group for making comparisons among various peripheral nerve repair techniques. It is unclear that whether these methods used interchangeably yield similar functional, physiological and morphological results or not. The aim of this study is to demonstrate functional and morphological results of these diverse nerve grafting techniques, thereby a possible necessity of standardization. Material and Methods: Thirty-two adult male Sprague-Dawley rats were divided into four groups and used. A nerve defect measuring 1.5 cm was created in the sciatic nerve of the rat, and in group one, split ends of the defect were buried into neighbouring muscles (nerve defect group). In groups two and three, resected nerve segment was sutured to its own place in its original direction (orthotopic graft group) or after reversing it 180 degrees (inverted graft group). In group four, a sural nerve graft taken from the same leg was used to bridge the defect (distant graft group). Functional, electrophysiological and histometric results obtained at 21st week were compared among the groups in order to see whether they were similar or not. Results. There were significant differences among the groups. Regarding functional results, orthotopic and inverted graft groups gave superior results compared to nerve defect and distant graft groups. Most importantly, it is clear that different nerve grafting techniques can not be used interchangeably. Conclusion: The results of the present study suggest that the use of a constant method in order to compose a nerve graft group in experimental studies may be convenient to avoid contradictory results among the researches. In other words, standardization of nerve grafting methods in experimental studies is mandatory.