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Ultrasound Guidance for Ulnar Nerve Block in the Forearm
  1. Andrew T. Gray, M.D., Ph.D.a and
  2. Ingeborg Schafhalter-Zoppoth, M.D.a
  1. From the Department of Anesthesia and Perioperative Care, University of California, San Francisco, San Francisco General Hospital, San Francisco, California.
  1. Reprint requests: Andrew T. Gray, M.D., Ph.D., Department of Anesthesia and Perioperative Care, Room 3C-38, San Francisco General Hospital, University of California, San Francisco, CA 94110, USA. E-mail: graya{at}


Objective The objective of this study was to establish the feasibility of ulnar nerve block under direct imaging.

Case reports Two patients undergoing surgery on the fifth digit or medial hand received ulnar nerve blocks in the mid-forearm (approximately 15 cm proximal to the styloid process of the ulna). Ultrasound imaging was used to identify the ulnar nerve in the forearm and guide local anesthetic infiltration. Both patients had successful blocks, including sensory anesthesia of the dorsomedial hand.

Conclusions Ultrasound guidance for ulnar nerve block in the forearm is a promising technique that includes block of the dorsal cutaneous branch. Anatomic and sonographic considerations are discussed.

  • Ultrasound
  • Ulnar nerve
  • Neurosonography
  • Upper extremity
  • Local anesthetic

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  • Supported by gifts from the Sessler Family and Beckman Foundation.