Effect of resistance training on the reduction of edema, nociception, and nerve regeneration in a sciatic nerve compression model

Juliana Sobral Antunes, Keli Lovison, Jhenifer Karvat, Lisyana Vieira, Ana Luiza Peretti, Guilherme Hideaki Higuchi, Maria Lúcia Bonfleur, Rose Meire Costa Brancalhão, Lucinéia de Fátima Chasko Ribeiro, Gladson Ricardo Flor Bertolini


Aims: To analyze the effects of ladder-climbing resistance training exercise on edema, nociception, and regeneration of the sciatic nerve in Wistar rats subjected to sciatic nerve compression.

Methods: Twenty-four Wistar rats were divided into four groups: Control Group, Exercise Group, Injury Group, and Treated Group (injury and exercise). Injury Group and Treated Group were subjected to sciatic nerve compression with a hemostat for 30 seconds. On the third day after injury, Exercise Group and Treated Group began treatment with ladder-climbing resistance exercise. The treatment consisted in performing two series of 10 ladder climbs with a 100-gram overload and a one-minute interval between the series. The study was conducted for 22 days, during which time the animals were evaluated for edema and nociception. Twenty-two days after surgery, the animals were anesthetized for removal of a sciatic nerve fragment and analysis of the number of axons and fiber density. Thereafter, still under anesthesia, the animals were euthanized. Nerve sampling followed the routine histological processing protocol. Expressions of Neural Growth Factor and Brain-derived Neurotrophic Factor were evaluated by Western blotting.

Results: There was no significant difference in edema size between groups. Control Group showed the highest nociceptive threshold compared to the other groups. The morphometric analysis showed no significant difference in number of axons and fiber density between groups. The expression of Brain-derived Neurotrophic Factor was greater in the Injury Group and the Treated Group compared to the Control Group.

Conclusions: The proposed ladder-climbing resistance training was not effective in reducing edema and nociception or in increasing the number of axons and fiber density after sciatic nerve injury.


motor activity; sciatic nerve; sciatic neuropathy; pain measurement; nerve regeneration.


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DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.15448/1980-6108.2016.3.23711

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