Targeted muscle reinnervation as a solution for nerve pain

Steven T. Lanier, Sumanas W. Jordan, Jason H. Ko, Gregory Ara Dumanian*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Learning Objectives: After reading this article, the participants should be able to: 1. List current nonsurgical and surgical strategies for addressing postamputation neuroma pain and discuss their limitations. 2. Summarize the indications and rationale for targeted muscle reinnervation. 3. Develop an operative plan for targeted muscle reinnervation in an acute or delayed fashion for upper and lower extremity amputations. 4. Propose a management algorithm for treatment of symptomatic neuromas in an intact limb. 5. Discuss the risk of neuroma development after primary revision digital amputation or secondary surgery for a digital neuroma. 6. Compare and contrast targeted muscle reinnervation to the historical gold standard neuroma treatment of excision and burying the involved nerve in muscle, bone, or vein graft. 7. Interpret and discuss the evidence that targeted muscle reinnervation improves postamputation neuroma and phantom pain when performed either acutely or in a delayed fashion to treat existing pain. Summary: Symptomatic injured nerves resulting from amputations, extremity trauma, or prior surgery are common and can decrease patient quality of life, thus necessitating an effective strategy for management. Targeted muscle reinnervation is a modern surgical strategy for prevention and treatment of neuroma pain that promotes nerve regeneration and healing rather than neuroma formation. Targeted muscle reinnervation involves the transfer of cut peripheral nerves to small motor nerves of adjacent, newly denervated segments of muscle and can be easily performed without specialized equipment. Targeted muscle reinnervation strategies exist for both upper and lower extremity amputations and for symptomatic neuromas of intact limbs. Targeted muscle reinnervation has been shown in a prospective, randomized, controlled trial to result in lower neuroma and phantom pain when compared to the historical gold standard of burying cut nerves in muscle.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)651E-663E
JournalPlastic and reconstructive surgery
StateAccepted/In press - 2020

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery

Fingerprint Dive into the research topics of 'Targeted muscle reinnervation as a solution for nerve pain'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this