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[Common fibular nerve lesions. Etiology and treatment. Apropos of 146 cases with surgical treatment].

PURPOSE OF THE STUDY: Common peroneal nerve lesion on the lateral aspect of the knee is one of the most frequent neurologic injury of the lower limb. We reported the results of surgical procedure for each etiological group.

MATERIAL AND METHODS: In the peroneal nerve entrapment group, we individualised 62 fibular tunnel syndroms (55 idiopathic, 4 postural, 3 dynamic), and 16 external compression. Traumatic causes were represented by 22 varus injuries of the knee and by 11 fractures, 16 iatrogenic lesions, 2 wounds, 5 wound sequelae, 2 contusions and 1 burn. Tumoral group was represented by 7 intraneural ganglionic cyst and 2 extraneural tumour (1 exostosis and 1 chondromatosis of the proximal tibio fibular joint). All patients underwent surgical procedure. Neurolysis was performed when the nerve was in continuity. Suture or nerve grafting was performed in the other cases. In the case of intraneural ganglionic cyst, a complete tumoral excision was realised.

RESULTS: Eighty-three per cent of excellent and good results were obtained for the fibular tunnel syndrom, 62.5 per cent for external compression, 36 per cent for varus injury of the knee, 78 per cent for the other traumatic causes and 89 per cent for tumoral lesions.

DISCUSSION: This report confirms that the result depends on the etiology of the common peroneal nerve lesion. We propose surgical treatment within 2 to 4 months for the patients without clinical and electrophysiological improvement. If there is doubt on the continuity of the nerve, we propose an earlier surgical treatment. Our results were in general satisfactory except when a nerve graft was necessary furthermore if it was a traction injury and if the length of the graft was longer than 6 centimeters.

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