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J Korean Soc Microsurg. 2012 Nov;21(2):81-85. English. Original Article.
Rhee SY , Han SH , Lee SC , Lee IS , Kim JW .
Department of Orthopedic Surgery, CHA Bundang Medical Center, CHA University, Seongnam-si, Korea.

PURPOSE: Saturday night palsy is a transient form of nerve palsy that occurs after a prolonged period of direct pressure on the course of radial nerve by one's own or spouse's head. Although commonly encountered, there have been only few studies concerning its convalescence. The purpose of this study is to predict the prognosis of Saturday night palsy based on the causes, time to recovery and degree of recovery. MATERIALS AND METHODS: Retrospective study of 20 patients who were diagnosed compression radial nerve palsy was performed. The average age was 36.7 years old and the mean follow-up period was 19.6 months. We investigated sleeping hours as an indirect measure of nerve compression time, recovery of wrist and finger extension, DASH score on the monthly based follow up. RESULTS: The mean sleeping hours was 5.8 hours and all patients showed full recovery of wrist and fingers extension with the mean duration of symptom for 3.2 months. DASH score was an average 1.53 at the last follow up and we found no statistical significance between the time to recovery and the sleeping hours. CONCLUSION: Complete natural recovery can be expected in compression radial nerve palsy in this study without correlation with sleeping time. Accurate diagnosis is important in order to avoid unnecessary therapeutic intervention and further study should be accomplished for clarifying the related prognostic factors in larger scale of the cases.

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