Abstract Inferior alveolar nerve (IAN) transposition surgery may cause some degree of sensory impairment. Accurate and reproducible tests are mandatory to assess IAN conduction capacity following nerve transposition. In this study subjective (heat, pain and tactile-discriminative tests) and objective (electrophysiological) assessments were performed in 10 patients receiving IAN transposition (bilaterally in 8 cases) in order to evaluate any impairment of the involved nerves one year post-operatively. All patients reported a tingling, well-tolerated sensation in the areas supplied by the mental nerve with no anaesthesia or burning paresthesia. Tactile discrimination was affected the most (all but 1 patient). No action potential was recorded in 4 patients' sides (23.5%); 12 sides showed a decreased nerve conduction velocity (NCV) (70.5%) and 1 side normal NCV values (6%). There was no significant difference in NCV decrease between partial and total transposition sides, if examined separately. Nerve conduction findings were related 2-point discrimination scores, but not to changes in pain and heat sensitivity. These findings show that lateral nerve transposition, though resulting in a high percentage of minor IAN injuries, as determined by electrophysiological testing, provides a viable surgical procedure to allow implant placement in the posterior mandible without causing severe sensory complaints. Considering ethical and forensic implications, patients should be fully informed that a certain degree of nerve injury might be expected to occur from the procedure. Electrophysiological evaluation is a reliable way to assess the degree of IAN dysfunction, especially if combined with a clinical examination. Intraoperative monitoring of IAN conduction might help identify the pathogenetic mechanisms of nerve injury and the surgical steps that are most likely to harm nerve integrity.
|Titolo:||Clinical and electrophysiological assessment of inferior alveolar nerve function after lateral nerve transposition.|
|Data di pubblicazione:||1999|
|Appare nelle tipologie:||01.01 Articolo in Rivista|
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