Published online Nov 18, 2011. doi: 10.5312/wjo.v2.i11.102
Revised: October 2, 2011
Accepted: October 9, 2011
Published online: November 18, 2011
In peripheral nerve injury, end-to-side neurorrhaphy involves coaptation of the distal stump of a transected nerve to the trunk of an adjacent donor nerve. It has been proposed as an alternative technique when the proximal stump of an injured nerve is unavailable or the nerve gap is too long to be bridged by a nerve graft. Experimental and clinical data suggests that end-to-side neurorrhaphy can provide satisfactory functional recovery for the recipient nerve, without any deterioration of the donor nerve function. The most accepted mechanism of nerve regeneration following end-to-side neurorrhaphy is collateral sprouting. The source of the regenerating axons traveling in the epineurium of the donor nerve is thought to be the proximal Ranvier’s nodes at the site of end-to-side neurorrhaphy, however, histologic evidence is still lacking. Partial neurotomy of the donor nerve may enhance regeneration of motor neurons through end-to-side neurorrhaphy and reinnervation of motor targets.