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Author: Peter C. Mullen

How Does Peripheral Nerve Surgery Work?

How Does Peripheral Nerve Surgery Work?

Peripheral nerve surgery – a lot of people keep hearing the term without quite understanding what it means. Well, to be precise, peripheral nerve surgery involves operating on the nerves present within the peripheral nervous system of the body. These nerves are located outside of the brain and the spinal cord, and so have no connection to the central nervous system. As the name suggests, the location of these nerves is in the periphery of the body, like the legs and the arms. It also includes the nerves present in the face/scalp and trunk sections of the body. There are various reasons why we suffer from problems related to the peripheral nervous system. Let’s take a look at some of these below.

Common Causes

Your peripheral nerves might be subjected to a lot of pressure as they pass along the normal route from the spinal cord and the brain to the final area, like the back of the scalp and the toes. A tumor might be present inside the nerve, leading to the buildup of pressure or there might be an external tumor that exerts pressure on the nerve. Your nerves might have sustained some form of trauma from a prior surgical procedure or accident. Injuries may also be caused to the nerve owing to excessive stretching. This usually happens when you’ve sustained a sudden injury like a whiplash.

Modes of Treatment

The kind of treatment that you’ll receive for your condition depends entirely on the pathology. There might be some sort of external pressure on the nerves that leads to irritation. If that is the case, then it’s up to the nerve surgeons to relieve this external pressure. The best example for such a procedure is the one that’s performed at the time of nerve decompression to treat long-lasting and chronic pains and headaches. If some sort of tumor is present inside the nerve, it is easy to remove it and the nerve might be preserved without any kind of difficulty. However, reconstruction surgery is also an option in order to restore function and sensation to the nerves. If there is a cut of some kind on your peripheral nerves, surgery is the only way to repair the damage.

Medical Procedure of Surgeons

Any plastic surgeon who is well-versed in the field of peripheral nerve surgery will know that the ideal way to cure a peripheral nerve problem, like carpal tunnel syndrome, is to un-pinch or decompress the nerve through the adjustment of the tissue that lies around it. This means that the nerve is not tampered with, and it is left intact. This sort of procedure has a very high rate of success.

According to recent research, some nerves present in the neck and the head remain compression, and if they are decompressed, it leads to total relief from the chronic headaches. The effects of this treatment can sometimes be permanent. Such modern procedures tend to produce quite dramatic effects that benefit you in the long run.

What Should You Know About Cubital Tunnel Syndrome

What Should You Know About Cubital Tunnel Syndrome

If you are plagued by constant pain in your little or ring finger and elbow, then there is a high possibility that you might be suffering from CuTS or Cubital Tunnel Syndrome. This is a kind of repetitive stress injury which produces weird sensations in your body. When your ulnar nerve becomes damaged, stressed, or pinched, it leads to CuTS. Though it doesn’t sound dangerous, CuTS, if left untreated for too long, can lead to high amount of pain and may leave your hand unusable. Below you’ll find all the information about this procedure to dispel any doubs.

Always Consult a Specialist

Cubital Tunnel Syndrome requires a nerve surgeon to look at it, and they must have prior experience dealing with this sort of problem. If the symptoms of CuTS is extreme in your case and lasts for a long period of time, then you should consult a surgeon as soon as possible. Ask any questions you have so that it gets cleared up. If you think that your surgeon doesn’t have in-depth knowledge of CuTS, then you should definitely seek a second opinion.

Testing for CuTS

Most doctors will recommend an NCV test if they suspect CuTS. However, this test is more useful when it comes to measuring the speed of the impulses that travel through the ulnar nerve. An EMG test is performed on the muscles present in the forearm that control the ulnar nerve. When your muscles don’t work properly, it could be due to nerve damage. The reduced velocity traveling via the ulnar nerve can detect CuTS properly. It has been found that the NCV test is a suitable indicator of CuTS instead of EMG as NCV focuses directly on the nerve.

Diagnosis

Your doctor conducted an EMG test as well as an NCV test, and the results came negative. However, this does not in any way indicate that you are free of CuTS symptoms and pain. A pinched nerve may often be responsible for muscle weakness, pain, and number. However, if only a part of the nerve is affected and the compression on the nerve is minimal, then it’s likely that the test results will be negative. Don’t put an end to medical care. Press your doctor to provide a solution. If your muscle pain persists, then there might be something wrong with your nerves, no matter what the tests indicate.

Understanding the Root of the Problem

The symptoms of CuTS appear when the ulnar nerve is damaged or pinched. Thus, the best method to cure CuTS is to figure out which activity caused the nerve to become pinched in the first place, and then stop those activities. You can then proceed with the treatment through surgery.

Surgical Treatment

Most physicians ask patients to try some conservative treatments before undergoing nerve surgery. However, in cases where CuTS is severe or the injury is extreme, the need for surgery is immediate. Conservative treatment involves wearing a splint that will keep the arm straight during activities like physical therapy, sleeping, using technology and tools, indulging in work habits, and using medication to lower the pain.

However, no matter what, you shouldn’t wait too long before you get surgery. Even if your condition isn’t severe, there’s no telling when it can take a turn for the worse. So be sure to get it treated at once. The worse the condition gets, the less your chances become for complete recovery. If the symptoms of CuTS still remain after conservative treatment for a few months, you should definitely go for nerve surgery.

Preferred Methods

While some surgeons prefer transposition methods for CuTS surgery, others opt for ulnar decompression. Ulnar transposition is a lot more invasive, and requires your arm to be immobilized for a long time. Moreover, the recovery rate is twice the amount of time it takes during decompression. Despite these drawbacks, there are several reasons for choosing transposition surgery instead of decompression. Though the reasons vary from one patient to another, your surgeon might suggest transposition due to the severity of your condition and the clawing of your hand.

Does Nerve Surgery Take Place in the Teeth?

Does Nerve Surgery Take Place in the Teeth?

There comes in a time in the life of every person when they sustain some form of damage or the other to the teeth. However, in cases where the dental pulp is harmed, proper attention is required. Dental pulp refers to the living tissue located in the tooth’s root canal, and it contains nerves, blood vessels, and connective tissues. The extent of injury and the surgery varies considerably, but they are also affected by the condition of the tooth. The surgery that’s used to cure this type of dental pulp injury is known as endodontic or root canal treatment.

Choosing the Right Doctor

Children as well as adults sustain damage to the dental pulp, and they have to approach a dentist for dealing with the pain. Actually, every dentist, including the general dentist, can complete an endodontic surgery as long as they’ve received the right sort of training in dental school. However, for more serious conditions, the general dentists refer the patients to the specialists who are known as endodontists.

The reason why endodontists are the go-to doctors for these types of nerve procedures in the teeth is because they’ve received specialized treatment that can help the patients recover faster. They are capable of providing only endodontic services in the course of their practice, and because they have specialized in that field. For a person to become an endodontist, they actually have to undergo advanced training for more than two years following dental school. Endodontic surgery can get quite complex, and unless a person has the right sort of training, they may slip up. Such complications cannot be afforded by the patients.