In this study, researchers investigated a morphometric structures of the branches involved in the sural nerve and sural nerve formation. The sural nerve (SN) is formed by the juncture of the medial sural cutaneous nerve (MSCN), which is a branch of the tibial nerve (TN), and the lateral sural cutaneous nerve (LSCN), which is a branch of the common peroneal nerve (CPN), in the posterior of the leg.
Afterwards, it follows the small saphenous vein as far as the posterior of the malleolus lateralis. On the exterior part of the dorsum of the foot, it extends up to the little toe as the lateral dorsal cutaneous nerve. The SN receives cutaneous sensations from the posterolateral part of the distal region of the leg, malleolus lateralis, lateral part of the feet, and 4th and 5th toes on the feet.
In our study, we aimed to morphometrically investigate the anatomic and histological structures of the SN in human fetuses as well as its neighboring relations with the gastrocnemius muscle and calcaneal tendon. The study was conducted on 46 lower extremities of 23 fetuses which were obtained from Izmir Katip Çelebi University.
With ages from 18 and 32 gestational weeks, without any external pathology or anomaly. During the study period, the posterior-side skin dissection of the lower extremity was performed with the aid of a surgical dissection microscope initially, and the structures forming the sural nerve and the sural nerve were exposed and made visible. Afterwards, sections were taken from these structures for morphometric measurements and histological examination.
Therefore, SN is of clinical importance in the diagnostic evaluation of tissue biopsies, in nerve grafts, and in the identification of sensory losses that develop due to distal neuropathies, since mono-neuropathies pertaining to the SN are stated to be quite rarely seen.
In a study, they identified the morphometric measurements and histological characteristics of the SN and its branches in 46 legs of human fetuses through the anatomic dissection method and under the guidance of a surgical dissection microscope. Morphometric measurements were taken from these structures. It was determined that there was no statistical difference between right-left sides and genders in the morphometric measurements (p > 0.05).
In conclusion, their opinion that the data we obtained in our study will be of use to clinicians involved in determining the localization of the SN, in the path of the SN and its relations with neighboring structures, and also in minimizing nerve injuries likely to occur during surgical procedures to be performed on these regions.