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Radiol Bras. 2015 Nov-Dec;48(6):368-72. doi: 10.1590/0100-3984.2013.0028.

Compressive neuropathy of the first branch of the lateral plantar nerve: a study by magnetic resonance imaging.

Author information

1
MDs, Musculoskeletal Radiologists, Axial Medicina Diagnóstica, Belo Horizonte, MG, Brazil.
2
MD, Orthopedist, Head of the Foot Surgery Group at Santa Casa de Belo Horizonte, Professor at Faculdade de Ciências Médicas de Minas Gerais (FCMMG), Belo Horizonte, MG, Brazil.
3
MDs, Radiologists, Axial Medicina Diagnóstica, Belo Horizonte, MG, Brazil.
4
MD, Physician Assistant, Axial Medicina Diagnóstica, Belo Horizonte, MG, Brazil.

Abstract

in English, Portuguese

OBJECTIVE:

To assess the prevalence of isolated findings of abnormalities leading to entrapment of the lateral plantar nerve and respective branches in patients complaining of chronic heel pain, whose magnetic resonance imaging exams have showed complete selective fatty atrophy of the abductor digiti quinti muscle.

MATERIALS AND METHODS:

Retrospective, analytical, and cross-sectional study. The authors selected magnetic resonance imaging of hindfoot of 90 patients with grade IV abductor digiti quinti muscle atrophy according to Goutallier and Bernageau classification. Patients presenting with minor degrees of fatty muscle degeneration (below grade IV) and those who had been operated on for nerve decompression were excluded.

RESULTS:

A female prevalence (78.8%) was observed, and a strong correlation was found between fatty muscle atrophy and plantar fasciitis in 21.2%, and ankle varices, in 16.8% of the patients.

CONCLUSION:

Fatty atrophy of the abductor digiti quinti muscle is strongly associated with neuropathic alterations of the first branch of the lateral plantar nerve. The present study showed a significant association between plantar fasciitis and ankle varices with grade IV atrophy of the abductor digiti quinti muscle.

KEYWORDS:

Abductor digiti quinti muscle; Atrophy; Baxter; Inferior calcaneal nerve; Lateral plantar nerve

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