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Muscle Nerve. 2000 Jun;23(6):883-7.

Peripheral neuropathy in chronic venous insufficiency.

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  • 1Department of Neurology, University of Erlangen, Schwabachanlage 6, 91054 Erlangen, Germany.


Chronic venous insufficiency (CVI) of the lower legs may cause tissue damage, but involvement of peripheral nerves is uncertain. We examined 30 patients with CVI and 20 healthy controls using motor and sensory nerve conduction studies, vibration testing and thermotesting, quantitative sudomotor axon-reflex test, and laser Doppler flowmetry. Subjects with possible confounding factors for peripheral neuropathies were excluded. Prolongation of distal motor latency of the peroneal nerve (median, 5.4 versus 4.5 ms; P = 0.02), increased limits for warm (9.60 degrees C versus 5.20 degrees C; P = 0.016) and cold detection (3.45 degrees C versus 1.55 degrees C; P = 0.016) and reduced vibration sense (2.8925 versus 1.1075; P < 0.008) were found. The results demonstrate a disturbance of A-alpha fibers, A-beta fibers, A-delta fibers, and thermoafferent-C fibers, possibly induced by ischemia due to venous microangiopathy and increased endoneurial pressure. Analogous to neuropathic ulcers in diabetes, the CVI-associated neuropathy may also be a cofactor in the development of venous ulcers.

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