Nerve Repair and Grafting in the Upper Extremity

S. Houston Payne, Jr., MD

J South Orthop Assoc. 2001;10(2) 

In This Article

Introduction

The diagnosis and treatment of injury to the peripheral nervous system is one of the greatest challenges in orthopaedic surgery. These common injuries with potentially devastating results provide ongoing stimulus for researchers striving for improved understanding of peripheral nerve biology and its application to nerve repair. A basic understanding of peripheral nerve biology, particularly as it relates to the process of nerve degeneration and regeneration, is critical to patient care. This knowledge, coupled with a thorough understanding of clinical anatomy, provides the clinician with the necessary tools for initial evaluation of the nerve-injured patient. To construct an appropriate plan of management, the physician must understand the operative and nonoperative treatment alternatives for specific nerve injuries. A reconstructive plan can then be formulated with realistic expectations based on reported clinical results.

For more detailed information on nerve repair and grafting, the reader is referred to Orthopaedic Care: Medical and Surgical Management of Musculoskeletal Disorders (www.orthotextbook.net), which is available online from the Southern Orthopaedic Association, Clinical Orthopaedic Society, and affiliated organizations.

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