Journal article

Morphology of Donor and Recipient Nerves Utilised in Nerve Transfers to Restore Upper Limb Function in Cervical Spinal Cord Injury

Aurora Messina, Natasha Van Zyl, Michael Weymouth, Stephen Flood, Andrew Nunn, Catherine Cooper, Jodie Hahn, Mary P Galea

BRAIN SCIENCES | MDPI | Published : 2016

Abstract

Loss of hand function after cervical spinal cord injury (SCI) impacts heavily on independence. Multiple nerve transfer surgery has been applied successfully after cervical SCI to restore critical arm and hand functions, and the outcome depends on nerve integrity. Nerve integrity is assessed indirectly using muscle strength testing and intramuscular electromyography, but these measures cannot show the manifestation that SCI has on the peripheral nerves. We directly assessed the morphology of nerves biopsied at the time of surgery, from three patients within 18 months post injury. Our objective was to document their morphologic features. Donor nerves included teres minor, posterior axillary, b..

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Grants

Awarded by Institute for Safety Compensation and Recovery Research


Funding Acknowledgements

Funding was obtained from the Institute for Safety Compensation and Recovery Research: Project N-13-091 Nerve transfers for restoration of upper limb function in tetraplegia. The authors express their thanks to Francesco Camera, Carmine Camera and Rosey Van Driel for technical assistance and to Anthony Jaworowski, Allison Yates and Bridget Hill for reviewing the manuscript.