Raman spectroscopy of non-penetrating peripheral nerve damage in swine: A tool for spectral pathology of nerves

Katherine E. Cilwa, Tiffani Slaughter, Eric A. Elster, Jonathan A. Forsberg, Nicole J. Crane

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contributionpeer-review

Abstract

Over 30% of combat injuries involve peripheral nerve injury compared to only 3% in civilian trauma. In fact, nerve dysfunction is the second leading cause of long-term disability in injured service members and is present in 37% of upper limb injuries with disability. Identification and assessment of non-penetrating nerve injury in trauma patients could improve outcome and aid in therapeutic monitoring. We report the use of Raman spectroscopy as a noninvasive, non-destructive method for detection of nerve degeneration in intact nerves due to non-penetrating trauma. Nerve trauma was induced via compression and ischemia/reperfusion injury using a combat relevant swine tourniquet model (>3 hours ischemia). Control animals did not undergo compression/ischemia. Seven days post-operatively, sciatic and femoral nerves were harvested and fixed in formalin. Raman spectra of intact, peripheral nerves were collected using a fiber-optic probe with 3 mm diameter spot size and 785 nm excitation. Data was preprocessed, including fluorescence background subtraction, and Raman spectroscopic metrics were determined using custom peak fitting MATLAB® scripts. The abilities of bivariate and multivariate analysis methods to predict tissue state based on Raman spectroscopic metrics are compared. Injured nerves exhibited changes in Raman metrics indicative of 45% decreased myelin content and structural damage (p<<0.01). Axonal and myelin degeneration, cell death and digestion, and inflammation of nerve tissue samples were confirmed via histology. This study demonstrates the non-invasive ability of Raman spectroscopy to detect nerve degeneration associated with non-penetrating injury, relevant to neurapraxic and axonotmetic injuries; future experiments will further explore the clinical utility of Raman spectroscopy to recognize neural injury.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationImaging, Manipulation, and Analysis of Biomolecules, Cells, and Tissues XIII
EditorsDaniel L. Farkas, Dan V. Nicolau, Robert C. Leif
PublisherSPIE
ISBN (Electronic)9781628414189
DOIs
StatePublished - 2015
Externally publishedYes
EventImaging, Manipulation, and Analysis of Biomolecules, Cells, and Tissues XIII - San Francisco, United States
Duration: 9 Feb 201511 Feb 2015

Publication series

NameProgress in Biomedical Optics and Imaging - Proceedings of SPIE
Volume9328
ISSN (Print)1605-7422

Conference

ConferenceImaging, Manipulation, and Analysis of Biomolecules, Cells, and Tissues XIII
Country/TerritoryUnited States
CitySan Francisco
Period9/02/1511/02/15

Keywords

  • Extremity Wounds
  • Ischemia/Reperfusion Injury
  • Nerve
  • Raman spectroscopy
  • Trauma
  • War Wounds

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