Effect of tarsal tunnel decompression in the streptozotocin-induced diabetic rat.
The streptozotocin-induced diabetic rat has changes in the hind-foot walking track pattern that are progressive over time. The present study investigated the effect of microsurgical neurolysis of the posterior tibial nerve and its branches in the tarsal tunnel on this pattern. The tarsal tunnel decompression was done at the time of onset of diabetes. The results of the study confirmed the progressive pattern of track abnormalities in this rat model, P < .05. The results demonstrated that rats in which the tarsal tunnel had been decompressed at the onset of their diabetes did not develop the characteristically abnormal diabetic walking track pattern. Rather, the track patterns of the decompressed tarsal tunnel diabetic rats were not significally different from a nondiabetic control population.