Outcome After Reconstruction of 43 Digital Nerve Defects With Muscle-in-Vein Conduits

Ines Ana Ederer, Johannes A Mayer, Johannes Heinzel, Jonas Kolbenschlag, Adrien Daigeler, Theodora Wahler

Publikation: Beitrag in Fachzeitschrift (peer-reviewed)Artikel in Fachzeitschrift

2 Zitate (Scopus)


PURPOSE: Muscle-in-vein conduits provide an alternative for bridging digital nerve defects when tension-free suture is not possible. Low donor site morbidity and absence of additional costs are favorable advantages compared with autografts or conduits.

METHODS: We retrospectively reviewed 37 patients with 43 defects of proper palmar digital nerves. Primary repair by muscle-in-vein conduits was performed in 22 cases, whereas 21 cases underwent secondary reconstruction. Recovery of sensibility was assessed using static and moving 2-point discrimination and Semmes-Weinstein monofilament testing. Results were compared with the contralateral side serving as a control. Outcome data were stratified according to international guidelines and evaluated for differences in terms of age, gap length, time of reconstruction, and concomitant injuries.

RESULTS: The median gap length was 20 mm (range, 9-60 mm). After a median follow-up of 25.0 months (interquartile range, 29.0 months), the median static and moving 2-point discrimination were 7.0 mm and 5.0 mm (interquartile range, 3.0 mm), respectively. The evaluation with Semmes-Weinstein monofilament revealed a median reduction of sensibility of 2 levels compared with the contralateral side. According to the American Society for Surgery of the Hand guidelines, 81.4% of the results were classified as excellent or good, whereas fair and poor results were noted in 9.3% of the cases each. The modified Highet and Sander's criteria rated complete clinical recovery in 13 cases; 23 results were regarded as S3+.

CONCLUSIONS: Muscle-in-vein conduits can be considered for primary and secondary reconstruction of digital nerves. Successful sensory recovery in terms of measurable 2-point discrimination was achieved in 91% of all cases.


Seiten (von - bis)948.e1-948.e9
FachzeitschriftJournal of Hand Surgery
Frühes Online-Datum07 Apr. 2022
PublikationsstatusVeröffentlicht - Sept. 2023


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