Nerve Capping Techniques for Neuroma Management: A Comprehensive Literature Review

Andrea Sisti, Safak Uygur, Samson David Lopez-Schultz, Petros Konofaos

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

2 Scopus citations

Abstract

Background/Aim of the Study Nerve capping is a method of neuroma treatment or prevention that consists of the transplantation of a proximal nerve stump into an autograft or other material cap, after surgical removal of the neuroma or transection of the nerve. The aim was to reduce neuroma formation and symptoms by preventing neuronal adhesions and scar tissue. In this narrative literature review, we summarize the studies that have investigated the effectiveness of nerve capping for neuroma management to provide clarity and update the clinician's knowledge on the topic. Methods: A systematic electronic search following the Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Reviews and Meta-Analyses criteria was performed in the PubMed database combining "neuroma,""nerve,""capping,""conduit,""treatment,""management,""wrap,""tube,"and "surgery"as search terms. English-language clinical studies on humans and animals that described nerve capping as a treatment/prevention technique for neuromas were then selected based on a full-text article review. The data from the included studies were compiled based on the technique and material used for nerve capping, and technique and outcomes were reviewed. Results: We found 10 applicable human studies from our literature search. Several capping materials were described: epineurium, nerve, muscle, collagen nerve conduit, Neurocap (synthetic copolymer of lactide and caprolactone, which is biocompatible and resorbable), silicone rubber, and collagen. Overall, 146 patients were treated in the clinical studies. After surgery, many patients were completely pain-free or had considerable improvement in pain scores, whereas some patients did not have improvement or were not satisfied after the procedure. Nerve capping was used in 18 preclinical animal studies, using a variety of capping materials including autologous tissues, silicone, and synthetic nanofibers. Preclinical studies demonstrated successful reduction in rates of neuroma formation. Conclusions: Nerve capping has undergone major advancements since its beginnings and is now a useful option for the treatment or prevention of neuromas. As knowledge of peripheral nerve injuries and neuroma prevention grows, the criterion standard neuroprotective material for enhancement of nerve regeneration can be identified and applied to produce reliable surgical outcomes.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)106-119
Number of pages14
JournalAnnals of plastic surgery
Volume92
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 1 2024
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • amputation
  • management
  • nerve capping
  • neuroma
  • pain management
  • surgery
  • treatment

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery

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