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December 23, 1974

Postsurgical Ulnar Neuropathy

Author Affiliations

Langley, British Columbia

JAMA. 1974;230(12):1636. doi:10.1001/jama.1974.03240120018010

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To the Editor.—  I read in The Journal of March 11, 1974, a letter from Drs. Murphy and Devers on the prevention of postsurgical ulnar neuropathy (227:1123, 1974).I also read, in the British Medical Journal of March 1973, "Cubital Tunnel External Compression Syndrome" by Dr. Thomas Wadsworth and Dr. John Williams. In this article, the clinical details of 12 cases of acute or subacute ulnar nerve palsy due to external compression of the cubital tunnel were presented. The descriptions included predisposing conditions, onset of symptoms, grade of palsy, operative treatment, if any, review period, results, etc.It seems this problem is of growing concern for both hospital personnel and physicians. I noticed, however, that in both articles, the value of nerve conduction tests or electromyography as a means of localizing the level of nerve injury was not mentioned.I recently encountered a patient who underwent bilateral subcutaneous mastectomies. Postoperatively,