Percutaneous cubital tunnel release with a dissection thread: a cadaveric study


Aurora/BayCare Health, BayCare Clinic Pain & Rehab Medicine


This cadaveric study tested the feasibility of decompressing the ulnar nerve across the elbow percutaneously with a commercially available surgical dissection thread, a guiding needle, hydrodissection and ultrasound guidance. We performed the procedure in 19 fresh-frozen cadaveric upper extremities. Subsequently, we did an anatomical dissection of the specimens to visualize the extent of ulnar nerve decompression and the extent of damage to surrounding structures. The cubital tunnel and deep across the medial elbow were completely transected leaving the ulnar nerve fully decompressed in all cases. There was no evidence of direct injury to the ulnar nerve or adjacent neurovascular structures. A prerequisite knowledge of sonographic anatomy and experience with interventional ultrasound is essential. Future clinical studies should evaluate this technique's safety and efficacy compared with conventional ones.

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