Outcomes Following Isolated Posterior Interosseous Nerve Neurectomy: A Systematic Review

Dennis J. Vanden Berge*, Nicholas A. Kusnezov, Sydney Rubin, Thomas Dagg, Justin Orr, Justin Mitchell, Miguel Pirela-Cruz, John C. Dunn

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

17 Scopus citations


Background: Posterior interosseous nerve neurectomies (PINN) are an option in the treatment of chronic dorsal wrist pain. However, the literature describing PINN consists primarily of small case series, and the procedure is typically done as an adjunct treatment; therefore, the outcomes of the PINN itself are not well known. We performed a systematic review of the literature to provide characteristics of patients following a PINN. Methods: A systematic review of the literature was performed. Papers published in the PubMed database in English on isolated PINN were included. Articles in which a PINN was performed as an adjunct were excluded. Primary outcomes were return to work, patient satisfaction, pain/function scores, wrist range of motion, complications, and pain recurrence. Weighted averages were used to calculate continuous data, whereas categorical data were noted in percentages. Results: The search yielded 427 articles including 6 studies and 135 patients (136 cases). The average age was 43.6 years (range, 17-75), and most patients were female (54.1%). At an average final follow-up of 51 months, 88.9% of patients were able to return to work. After initial improvement, a recurrence of pain occurred in 25.5% of patients at an average of 12.3 months. Excluding recurrence of pain, the complication rate was 0.9%, including 1 reflex sympathetic dystrophy. Overall, 88.4% of patients experienced a subjective improvement and were satisfied with the procedure. Conclusions: Isolated PINN have shown excellent clinical outcomes, with few patients experiencing recurrent pain at long-term follow-up. PINN can provide relief in patient’s chronic wrist pain.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)535-540
Number of pages6
Issue number6
StatePublished - 1 Nov 2017
Externally publishedYes


  • PINN
  • chronic wrist pain
  • hand and wrist surgery
  • posterior interosseous nerve neurectomy
  • wrist denervation


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