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International Journal of Morphology

On-line version ISSN 0717-9502


ZHONG, Lei et al. The Effective Injection Zone at the Popliteal Crease for Tibial and Common Peroneal Nerve Blocks and its Relation with the Origin Point of the Medial and Lateral Sural Cutaneous Nerves. Int. J. Morphol. [online]. 2014, vol.32, n.1, pp.79-83. ISSN 0717-9502.

A popliteal nerve block may be used to provide anesthesia and extended analgesia of the lower extremity, to ameliorate severe and long lasting postoperative pain. The aim of this study was to elucidate the anatomical location of tibial (TN) and common peroneal (CPN) nerves in the popliteal crease for effective nerve block. Fifty fresh specimens from 27 adult Chinese cadavers (16 males and 11 females, age range from 35 to 87 years) were investigated. Twenty-two cadavers were used to identify nerve locations and 5 cadavers were used to determine the depths of nerves in cross section. TN was found to be located at 50% from the most lateral point of the popliteal crease at 1.4 cm deep to the surface. In 20% of the 50 specimens, the medial sural cutaneous nerve branched out below or at the popliteal crease, whereas the CPN was located at 26.0% from the most lateral point of the popliteal crease and at 0.7 cm deep to the surface. Furthermore, in 6.0% of specimens the lateral sural cutaneous nerve branched out below or at the popliteal crease. This study suggests that the TN and CPN leave the sciatic nerve at variable distances from the popliteal crease. However, we believe that the results of the present study about the location of TN and CPN at the popliteal crease offer a good guide to optimal nerve block.

Keywords : Tibial nerve; Common peroneal nerve; Nerve block; Anatomy.

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