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Phenol block of peripheral nerve conduction: Titrating for optimum effect

Phenol block of peripheral nerve conduction: Titrating for optimum effect

Archives of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation 82(5): 671-676

To verify the dose-response relationship in phenol nerve block and to determine the concentration and volume of phenol injectate required for effective nerve conduction block. Before-after, experimental study. A research institute laboratory. Seventy-one New Zealand white rabbits. Group I (n = 48) received tibial nerve block by perineural injection (phenol, n = 40; saline, n = 8), group II (n = 21) by submerging the nerve in phenol solution. The 6 subgroups of group I each received different concentrations (3%, 4%, 5%) and volumes (0.1mL, 0.2mL, 0.3mL). The 2 subgroups of group II received 3% (n = 8) and 5% (n = 13) phenol. Compound muscle action potential (CMAP) and tension of triceps surae muscles by electric stimulation of the sciatic nerve were measured preintervention and at day 1, and weeks 1, 2, 4, and 8 postblock. Histologic studies were performed on 2 animals from group I. Two rabbits in group I died before results were obtained. In the remaining animals, CMAP amplitude reduced significantly (p <.05) as the volume of 5% phenol solution increased from 0.1mL, 0.2mL, to 0.3mL. A high concentration of phenol produced a more pronounced conduction block; however, no significant (p =.0589) difference existed among the 3 concentrations. Submerged tibial nerve had a greater degree of conduction block than perineurally injected nerve. Depth of the degeneration area in nerve fascicle varied with distance from the injection point. The nerve block effect of phenol can be titrated by adjusting the concentration and volume of phenol solution if the technique of application and localization of a block site are standardized.

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Accession: 046973214

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PMID: 11346846

DOI: 10.1053/apmr.2001.21975

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