Section 41
Chapter 40,331

Hypoglossal-facial nerve interpositional-jump graft for facial reanimation without tongue atrophy

May, M.; Sobol, S.M.; Mester, S.J.

Otolaryngology--Head and Neck Surgery Official Journal of American Academy of Otolaryngology-Head and Neck Surgery 104(6): 818-825


ISSN/ISBN: 0194-5998
PMID: 1908974
DOI: 10.1177/019459989110400609
Accession: 040330030

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The hemitongue paralysis that occurs as a result of a classic hypoglossal-facial nerve crossover procedure can result in profound functional deficits in speech, mastication, and swallowing. The procedure is not an option in patients with bilateral facial paralysis or those at risk for combined cranial nerve deficits. To address some of the drawbacks and limitations of this classic procedure, we developed the hypoglossal-facial nerve interpositional jump graft (12-7 jump graft) procedure. This procedure involves interposing a nerve graft between a partially severed but functionally intact twelfth cranial nerve and the degenerated seventh cranial nerve, and is often combined with other reanimation procedures. To date, we have performed 33 12-7 jump graft procedures in 30 patients (three were treated for bilateral facial paralysis); this report describes the procedure and its indications, and details the results of 23 procedures performed in 20 patients for whom 24-month follow-up data are available. Twelfth nerve deficits occurred in only three patients in this report. Recovery of facial function began between 3 and 24 months postoperatively. Facial tone and symmetry were achieved in every patient, no patient had significant mass movement, and 13 patients (two of whom were treated for bilateral facial paralysis) had excellent and three had superb restoration of facial movement. These results show the 12-7 jump graft to be a valuable adjunct for facial reanimation in selected patients.

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