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Recovery of colonic transit following extrinsic nerve damage in rats. Scand J Gastroenterol 2011 Jun;46(6):678-83



Pubmed ID




Scopus ID

2-s2.0-79955954939 (requires institutional sign-in at Scopus site)   11 Citations


INTRODUCTION: Injury to pelvic sympathetic and parasympathetic nerves from surgical and obstetrical trauma has long been cited as a cause for abnormal colorectal motility in humans. Using a rat model, acute transaction of these extrinsic nerves has been shown to effect colorectal motility. The aim of this study is to determine in a rat model how transection of these extrinsic nerves affects colonic transit over time.

METHODS: Eighty-two Sprague-Dawley rats underwent placement of a tunneled catheter into the proximal colon. Bilateral hypogastric, pelvic nerves (HGN and PN) or both were transected in 66 rats. The remaining 16 rats received a sham operation. Colonic transit was evaluated at postoperative days (PODs) 1, 3, and 7 by injecting and calculating the geometric center (GC) of the distribution of (51)Cr after 3 h of propagation.

RESULTS: At POD 1, transection of PNs significantly delayed colonic transit (GC = 4.9, p < 0.05), while transection of HGNs (GC = 8.5, p < 0.05) or transection of both nerves (GC = 7.8, p < 0.05) significantly accelerated colonic transit, when compared with sham operation (GC = 6.0). A significant trend toward recovery was noted in both the HGN and PN transection groups at POD 7.

CONCLUSIONS: Damage to the extrinsic sympathetic and/or parasympathetic PNs affects colonic transit acutely. These changes in large bowel motor function normalize over time implicating a compensatory mechanism within the bowel itself.

Author List

Ridolfi TJ, Tong WD, Kosinski L, Takahashi T, Ludwig KA


Kirk A. Ludwig MD Chief, Professor in the Surgery department at Medical College of Wisconsin
Timothy J. Ridolfi MD, MS, FACS Associate Professor in the Surgery department at Medical College of Wisconsin

MESH terms used to index this publication - Major topics in bold

Disease Models, Animal
Gastrointestinal Transit
Hypogastric Plexus
Parasympathetic Nervous System
Rats, Sprague-Dawley
Recovery of Function
Trauma, Nervous System