Outcome of contralateral C7 transfers to different recipient nerves after global brachial plexus avulsion.

Research paper by Yuzhou Y Liu, Xun X Yang, Kaiming K Gao, Hu H Yu, Feng F Xiao, Yongqing Y Zhuang, Jie J Lao

Indexed on: 20 Dec '18Published on: 20 Dec '18Published in: Brain and behavior


Contralateral cervical seventh nerve root (CC7) transfer has been widely applied for treatment of traumatic brachial plexus injury. The purpose of the study was to evaluate outcomes of patients with global brachial plexus avulsion (GBPA) after CC7 transfer and compare the recoveries of median nerve as the only recipient nerve and one of the multiple recipient nerves. A retrospective review of 51 patients treated with CC7 transfers after GBPA was carried out. The British Medical Research Council (MRC) grading system and range of joint motion (ROM) were used for motor and sensory assessment. The effective rates of FCR were 57.7%, 45.5%, and 36.4% in CC7 transfer to median nerve (CC7-Md), CC7 transfer to median nerve and biceps branch (CC7-Md+Bic) and CC7 transfer to median nerve and triceps branch (CC7-Md+Tric) groups, respectively. There were no statistical differences no matter in FCR or FDS among groups. The effective rate in biceps had no significant difference with that in triceps. The effective sensory recovery rate was 65.4%, 54.5%, and 36.4% in CC7-Md, CC7-Md+Bic, and CC7-Md+Tric groups. There were no statistical differences in the sensory effective recovery rate among groups. All the ROMs were improved significantly after surgery. The improvement of ROM of elbow flexion after surgery in CC7-Md+Bic group was significantly larger than that of elbow extension after surgery in CC7-Md+Tric group (p = 0.047). The CC7 transfer contributed to the functional improvement of the hand and wrist for the patients with global brachial plexus avulsion. The whole CC7 could be used to repair more than one recipient nerve (including median nerve) without affecting the recovery of median nerve. When CC7 was used to repair two nerves, biceps branch might be preferred to choose as one recipient nerve rather than triceps branch. © 2018 The Authors. Brain and Behavior published by Wiley Periodicals, Inc.