To verify the postoperative ultrastructural changes of the myotendinous nerve endings of feline extraocular muscles, which are known as proprioceptors. Sixteen recti of four cats were used and divided into three groups. In group A, eight lateral recti were recessed. In group B, four medial recti were resected by 10 mm from insertion to include the myotendinous junction. In group C, four medial recti were resected by 4 mm of muscle bellies only, without disturbing the myotendinous junction. Four weeks after surgery, specimens were examined with electron microscopy. In group A, overall neural structures were well maintained with slight axonal degeneration. In group B, only muscle fibers were observed without any regeneration of neural sprouts. In group C, axonal disintegration and shrinkage were evident. These results indicate that myotendinous nerve endings can be damaged in strabismus surgery, and that resection was more invasive than recession in disrupting myotendinous nerve endings.
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