Results of surgical repair versus splinting of experimentally transected muscle.
Complete muscle tears or transections can be treated by splinting or surgical repair. Although repair is often advocated in the young and athletic population, no well-controlled studies compare the results of splinting and surgical repair. I studied the effects of surgical repair versus splinting only of transected muscles in an experimental model. In group I (n = 14), a unilateral transection of the extensor digitorum longus (EDL) muscle of the Sprague-Dawley rat was treated with splinting only. In group II (n = 14), the muscle was surgically repaired as well. Active and passive strength measurements at day 7 and 14 showed an earlier return of passive strength in group II at day 7. No statistically significant differences at day 14 were noted. In this model, earlier return of active and passive strength occurred in surgically repaired muscle disruption as compared with nonrepaired muscles.
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