Current concepts| Volume 42, ISSUE 5, P367-377, May 2017

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The Role of Nerve Graft Substitutes in Motor and Mixed Motor/Sensory Peripheral Nerve Injuries

      Alternatives to nerve autograft have been invented and approved for clinical use. The reported outcomes of these alternatives in mixed motor nerve repair in humans are scarce and marked by wide variabilities. The purpose of our Current Concepts review is to provide an evidence-based overview of the effectiveness of nerve conduits and allografts in motor and mixed sensory/motor nerve reconstruction. Nerve graft substitutes have good outcomes in mixed/motor nerves in gaps less than 6 mm and internal diameters between 3 and 7 mm. There is insufficient evidence for their use in larger-gap and -diameter nerves; the evidence remains that major segmental motor or mixed nerve injury is optimally treated with a cabled nerve autograft.

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      Editor’s Suggestions for More Information

      1. Comparison of outcomes from processed nerve allograft, hollow tube conduits, and autograft in peripheral never repair (see Video). Safa B. Talk presented at: American Society for Surgery of the Hand Annual Meeting: September 18–20, 2014; Boston, MA. Also available on Hand-e:

      2. Outcomes of digital nerve repair with processed nerve allograft and hollow tube conduits (see Video). Pet M. Talk presented at: American Society for Surgery of the Hand Annual Meeting: September 10–12, 2015; Seattle, WA. Also available on Hand-e:

      3. Short gap entubulation (see Video). Edwards SG. Talk presented at: American Society for Surgery of the Hand & American Association for Hand Surgery Specialty Day: March 28, 2015; Las Vegas, NV. Also available on Hand-e:

      4. Allograft reconstruction for digital nerve loss (see Video). Taras JS. Talk presented at: American Society for Surgery of the Hand & American Association for Hand Surgery Specialty Day: March 15, 2014; New Orleans, LA. Also available on Hand-e:

      5. The peripheral nerve gap: repair, replace, or transfer? (see Video). Taras JS. Talk presented at: American Society for Surgery of the Hand Annual Meeting: September 18–20, 2014; Boston, MA. Also available on Hand-e:

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