Ultrasound assessment of sural nerve in Charcot-Marie-Tooth 1A neuropathy

Clin Neurophysiol. 2013 Aug;124(8):1695-9. doi: 10.1016/j.clinph.2013.02.020. Epub 2013 May 11.


Objective: Nerve ultrasound (US) has been used to study peripheral nerve disease, and increase of the cross-sectional area (CSA) has been described in demyelinating polyneuropathy. The objective of the current study is to characterise the US features of the sural nerve in a sample of Charcot-Marie-Tooth (CMT) 1A patients.

Methods: A total of 20 CMT1A patients were enrolled. As control group we studied 37 age- and sex-matched subjects. All patients underwent clinical examination, neurophysiology and US evaluation of the bilateral sural nerve and right ulnar nerve. US results were correlated with neurophysiology and clinical data.

Results: Sural nerve CSA was not increased in the majority of patients (70%), whereas an increased ulnar nerve CSA was present in the whole sample. Inverse relations were found between CSA of the ulnar nerve and body mass index (BMI) (p<0.0002, R=-0.8) and CSA of the sural nerve and age (right 0.006, R=-0.6, left 0.002, R=-0.6 and left and right p=0.00003, R=-0.4).

Conclusions: US showed ulnar CSA enlargement and normal sural nerve CSA.

Significance: The significance of normal sural nerve CSA in CMT1A patients need to be further investigated, possibly through longitudinal studies.

Keywords: Charcot–Marie-Tooth; Sural nerve; Ultrasound assessment.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Charcot-Marie-Tooth Disease / diagnostic imaging*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Sural Nerve / diagnostic imaging*
  • Ultrasonography
  • Young Adult