Effect of height on F-wave latency:Redefining reference values for Iranian population


Farhad Iranmanesh 1 , * , Houman Mahmoodi 2 , Jafar Ahmadi 3 , Vahidreza Akhondi 3


1 Assistant Professor Department Internal Medicine, Rafsanjan University of Medical Sciences, Rafsanjan, Iran.

2 Physiotherapist, Rafsanjan University of Medical Sciences, Rafsanjan, Iran.

3 General Practitioner, Rafsanjan University of Medical Sciences, Rafsanjan, Iran.


Hormozgan Medical Journal: 12 (2); e88941
Published Online: December 12, 2007
Article Type: Research Article
Received: June 05, 2006
Accepted: December 12, 2007




Intrudaction: F-wave latency is one of the most sensitive parameters which is
used for diagnosis of radiculopathy and neuropathy in electrodiagnostic medicine.
Electrodianosis professionals mostly use reference values published in major
textbooks mostly written in USA based on anthropomorphic characteristics of
American people. Also there is considerable difference between heights of males
and females in each country, which is not considered in reference tables. We
performed this study to determine any difference between F-wave latencies in
both genders and also between our population and mainly used reference values.
Methods: This cross-sectional study was performed on 60 healthy volunteers (30
males and 30 females). Minimum F-wave latencies of median and ulnar nerves at
wrist, and also tibial and peroneal nerves at ankle were recoded after ten
supramaximal stimulation of each nerve.
Results: The average heights were 156.05±4.80 and 171.58±6.05 centimeters
in females and males, respectively. Mean of minimum F-wave latencies in males
were 24.93±1.55, 25.73±1.48, 46.86±2.94 and 46.91±3.04 and in females
were 22.66±1.23, 22.97±1.33, 42.61±3.20 and 42.33±3.17 milliseconds for
median, ulnar, tibial and peroneal nerves, respectively. These values were
significantly higher in males than females. There was correlation between height
and mean of F-wave latencies in median, ulnar, tibial and peroneal nerves. There
were significant differences between males and females in all tested nerves. Also
there were significant differences between our measured latencies and the
reference values published in major electrodiagnostic textbooks.
Conclusion: Regarding the significant height difference between two genders, we
recommend defining separate reference values for each group. On the other hand,
each population should have its own reference values corresponding to average height
of its own people; otherwise the sensitivity of this parameter (F-wave latency) will be
significantly low.


Electrodiagnosis - F-wave – Height - Gender – Reference Value

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