An anatomical perspective of ulnar collateral nerve with reference to nerve and muscle transfer surgery

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Muscles, Ligaments and Tendons Journal


Background. The purpose was to analyze the prevalence, origin, course and termination of the ulnar collateral nerve in anatomical samples from Indian population. Methods. The present study included 68 adult human cadaveric embalmed upper limbs. The sex of these upper limbs were not known. The initial segment of radial nerve was meticulously dissected in the specimens to observe the ulnar collateral nerve. The digital Vernier caliper was used for the measurements which were performed in this study. The data was given in millimeter and expressed as mean ± SD. Results. The ulnar collateral nerve was observed in 57 (83.8%) of our specimens. It originated in the axilla in 35 cases (61.4%), at the brachio-axillary angle in 13 (22.8%) and in the arm in 9 cases (15.8%) respectively. The termination of ulnar collateral nerve by piercing deep into the triceps muscle happened 101.9 ± 4 mm above the medial epicondyle of humerus. The origins of muscular branch to long head of triceps muscle and ulnar collateral nerve were located 44.7 ± 3.7 mm and 66.7 ± 4.4 mm away from the bifurcation of posterior cord respectively. Conclusions. The present study suggests higher frequency of ulnar collateral nerve in sample Indian population. Ulnar collateral nerve can be used to re-innervate the muscles in case of brachial plexus injuries. Our study provides information about the detailed morphology and topography of the ulnar collateral nerve. The detailed knowl-edge can help the orthopedic surgeons during the procedures like muscle transfer, nerve transfer and nerve grafting.

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