Purpose: As alternatives to autograft become more conventional, clinical outcomes data on their effectiveness in restoring meaningful function is essential. In this study we report on the outcomes from a multicenter study on processed nerve allografts (Avance® Nerve Graft, AxoGen, Inc).
Patients and methods: Twelve sites with 25 surgeons contributed data from 132 individual nerve injuries. Data was analyzed to determine the safety and efficacy of the nerve allograft. Sufficient data for efficacy analysis were reported in 76 injuries (49 sensory, 18 mixed, and 9 motor nerves). The mean age was 41 ± 17 (18-86) years. The mean graft length was 22 ± 11 (5-50) mm. Subgroup analysis was performed to determine the relationship to factors known to influence outcomes of nerve repair such as nerve type, gap length, patient age, time to repair, age of injury, and mechanism of injury.
Results: Meaningful recovery was reported in 87% of the repairs reporting quantitative data. Subgroup analysis demonstrated consistency, showing no significant differences with regard to recovery outcomes between the groups (P > 0.05 Fisher's Exact Test). No graft related adverse experiences were reported and a 5% revision rate was observed.
Conclusion: Processed nerve allografts performed well and were found to be safe and effective in sensory, mixed and motor nerve defects between 5 and 50 mm. The outcomes for safety and meaningful recovery observed in this study compare favorably to those reported in the literature for nerve autograft and are higher than those reported for nerve conduits.
Copyright © 2011 Wiley-Liss, Inc.