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J Hand Surg Am. 2012 Oct;37(10):1986-9. doi: 10.1016/j.jhsa.2012.06.016.

Transfer of median and ulnar nerve fascicles for lesions of the posterior cord in infraclavicular brachial plexus injury: report of 2 cases.

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Upper Limb Unit, Orthopedic Department, Hospital General Universitario de Alicante, Alicante, Spain.


In infraclavicular lesions of brachial plexus, severe lesions of the posterior cord often occur when medial and lateral cord function is preserved to a greater or lesser extent. In these cases, shoulder function may be preserved by activity of the muscles innervated by the suprascapular nerve, but complete paralysis exists in the deltoid, triceps, and brachioradialis, and all wrist and finger extensors. Classical reconstruction procedures consist of nerve grafts, but their results in adults are disappointing. We report an approach transferring: (1) an ulnar nerve fascicle to the motor branch of the long portion of the triceps brachii muscle, (2) a median nerve branch from the pronator teres to the motor branch of the extensor carpi radialis longus, and (3) a median nerve branch from the flexor carpi radialis to the posterior interosseous nerve. We describe the procedure and report 2 clinical cases showing the effectiveness of this technique for restoring extension of the elbow, wrist, and fingers in the common infraclavicular lesions of the brachial plexus affecting the posterior cord.

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