Alterations in the mechanical properties of peripheral nerve following crush injury

J Biomech. 1984;17(3):185-93. doi: 10.1016/0021-9290(84)90009-5.


The mechanical properties of injured nerves have been studied. At specific times following unilateral nerve crush, the sciatic nerves of mice were tested mechanically. Photographs and longitudinal force measurements were obtained as nerve segments were elongated to mechanical failure. Stress and strain at the proportional limit and apparent elastic modulus were used as indicators of strength, elasticity and stiffness. Injury led to time-dependent increases in strength and stiffness and decreases in elasticity. These changes were apparent in both damaged and contralateral, undamaged nerves. Many of the changes appear to be related to the epineurium. Some mechanical changes in nerve could have important consequences for the integrity and function of nerves and mechanically interfaced structures.

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Biomechanical Phenomena
  • Elasticity
  • Mice
  • Mice, Inbred Strains
  • Sciatic Nerve / injuries*
  • Sciatic Nerve / physiology
  • Stress, Mechanical
  • Tensile Strength
  • Time Factors