The gliding force and work of flexion in the early days after primary repair of lacerated flexor tendons: an experimental study.

Research paper by R G RG Xie, Y Y Cao, X F XF Xu, B B Zhu

Indexed on: 30 Apr '08Published on: 30 Apr '08Published in: The Journal of hand surgery, European volume


We measured the resistance to tendon mobilisation within the first 5 days after primary repair of digital flexor tendons of chickens. Forty-six long toes of 23 chickens were assigned to six surgical groups and one unoperated control group. The tendons were partially lacerated and surgically repaired. The resistance to simulated active digital flexion was assessed in six operated groups at 0, 1, 2, 3, 4 and 5 days postoperatively. The force of tendon motion and work of flexion increased gradually from day 0 to day 5. The force and work at days 4 and 5 were significantly higher than those at days 0 and 1. No statistical difference was found in the resistance at days 0, 1, 2 and 3. Our results indicate that the gliding resistance gradually increases over the first 5 days after surgery and suggest that tendon motion may be started after the first 3 days, to avoid moving during this period of increased resistance with increased risk of tendon rupture.