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Guyon’s canal (also known as ulnar tunnel or canal) is a fibro-osseous tunnel at the anterior aspect of the wrist. It is superficial and slightly proximal to the flexor retinaculum. It is approximately 4 cm in length, spanning from the proximal aspect of the pisiform to the hook of hamate.
lateral (radial aspect): hook of hamate
superficial (roof): palmar carpal ligament
ulnar nerve: bifurcates within the canal into the deep (more radial) and superficial (more ulnar) branches
veins associated with the ulnar nerve
At the level of the hook of hamate, the canal bifurcates into two channels: the first channel contains the superficial ulnar nerve and ulnar artery, and the second channel contains the deep ulnar nerve. These are separated by either the fibrous arch of the flexor digiti minimi brevis, or the muscle itself attaching to the hook of hamate.
The abductor digiti minimi muscle can occasionally have an anomalous presence in Guyon’s canal. It was present in 25% of a sampled population and can cause compression leading to Guyon's canal syndrome 1.
History and etymology
Described and named by Jean Casimir Felix Guyon (1831-1920), a French anatomist and urologist in 1861 5.
- 1. Zeiss J, Jakab E, Khimji T, Imbriglia J. The ulnar tunnel at the wrist (Guyon's canal): normal MR anatomy and variants. (1992) AJR. American journal of roentgenology. 158 (5): 1081-5. doi:10.2214/ajr.158.5.1566671 - Pubmed
- 2. Pecina MM, Markiewitz AD, Krmpotic-Nemanic J. Tunnel Syndromes. CRC Press. (2001) ISBN:0849309522. Read it at Google Books - Find it at Amazon
- 3. Bachuora A, Jacoby SM. Ulnar Tunnel Syndrome. Department of Orthopaedic Surgery Faculty Papers. Paper 43. (2012) Read relevant article
- 4. www.wheelessonline.com. Tunnel of Guyon. Read relevant article. Accessed on 15/03/2016
- 5. Loukas M, Linganna S, Jordan R. Jean Casimir Félix Guyon--urologist and anatomist. (2007) Clinical anatomy (New York, N.Y.). 20 (1): 1-2. doi:10.1002/ca.20411 - Pubmed