Common Entrapment Neuropathies

Lisa D. Hobson-Webb, MD; Vern C. Juel, MD, FAAN Selected Topics in Outpatient Neurology p. 487-511 April 2017, Vol.23, No.2 doi: 10.1212/CON.0000000000000452
Article as PDF
-- Select an option --

Purpose of Review: This article addresses relevant peripheral neuroanatomy, clinical presentations, and diagnostic findings in common entrapment neuropathies involving the median, ulnar, radial, and fibular (peroneal) nerves.

Recent Findings: Entrapment neuropathies are a common issue in general neurology practice. Early diagnosis and effective management of entrapment mononeuropathies are essential in preserving limb function and maintaining patient quality of life. Median neuropathy at the wrist (carpal tunnel syndrome), ulnar neuropathy at the elbow, radial neuropathy at the spiral groove, and fibular neuropathy at the fibular head are among the most frequently encountered entrapment mononeuropathies. Electrodiagnostic studies and peripheral nerve ultrasound are employed to help confirm the clinical diagnosis of nerve compression or entrapment and to provide precise localization for nerve injury. Peripheral nerve ultrasound demonstrates nerve enlargement at or near sites of compression.

Summary: Entrapment neuropathies are commonly encountered in clinical practice. Accurate diagnosis and effective management require knowledge of peripheral neuroanatomy and recognition of key clinical symptoms and findings. Clinical diagnoses may be confirmed by diagnostic testing with electrodiagnostic studies and peripheral nerve ultrasound.

Address correspondence to Dr Lisa D. Hobson-Webb, Department of Neurology, Duke University Medical Center, DUMC 3403, Room 1255 EMG Laboratory, Durham, NC 27710, [email protected].

Relationship Disclosure: Dr Hobson-Webb has served on the editorial board of Clinical Neurophysiology and as an associate editor for Muscle & Nerve. Dr Hobson-Webb receives research/grant support from CSL Behring, the National Institute on Aging/Duke University Claude D. Pepper Older Americans Independence Center, and Sanofi Genzyme. Dr Juel receives research/grant support as site investigator for studies for Alexion Pharmaceuticals, Inc and the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, Division of Microbiology and Infectious Diseases.

Unlabeled Use of Products/Investigational Use Disclosure: Drs Hobson-Webb and Juel report no disclosures.

Copyright © 2017 by the American Academy of Neurology.