End-to-Side Interposed Donor Grafting as a Facial Nerve Reinforcement Technique after Vestibular Schwannoma Surgery

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Abstract

Objectives:

This retrospective case review was performed to determine the facial function outcome of an end-to-side interposed donor grafting technique in patients who had a nonresponsive and partially injured facial nerve during a translabyrinthine approach for vestibular schwannoma resection.

Methods:

The study included patients with silent electrophysiological tests after partial injury of the facial nerve during translabyrinthine schwannoma resection surgery in a tertiary referral hospital. The patients underwent end-to-side interposed donor grafting as a facial nerve reinforcement technique, and we evaluated their facial function after 1 year of follow-up.

Results:

Four cases with intact preoperative facial function were included (3 men and 1 woman). All patients had a lack of electrical response from the facial nerve and partial anatomic injury after a translabyrinthine approach. An end-to-side interposed donor grafting technique was performed. The donor grafts used were the sural nerve (2 patients), superior vestibular nerve (1 patient), and greater auricular nerve (1 patient). All patients achieved a good House-Brackmann grade. Ocular adjuvant procedures were performed in all patients.

Conclusions:

Immediate repair of the facial nerve with an interposed donor graft may provide better facial function in patients who have no electrical response from a partially injured facial nerve after vestibular schwannoma surgery.

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