Early Outcomes in an Emerging Facial Nerve Center: The Oregon Health and Science University (OHSU) Experience

Natalie A. Krane, Jimmy S. Chen, Haley Hanseler, Wenelia Baghoomian, John Ng, Mark K. Wax, Myriam Loyo

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Objectives: Nerve transfer (NT) and free gracilis muscle transfer (FGMT) are procedures for reanimation of the paralyzed face. Assessing the surgical outcomes of these procedures is imperative when evaluating the effectiveness of these interventions, especially when establishing a new center focused on the treatment of patients with facial paralysis. We desired to discuss the factors to consider when implementing a facial nerve center and the means by which the specialist can assess and analyze outcomes. Methods: Patients with facial palsy secondary to multiple etiologies, including cerebellopontine angle tumors, head and neck carcinoma, and trauma, who underwent NT or FGMT between 2014 and 2019 were included. Primary outcomes were facial symmetry and smile excursion, calculated using FACE-gram and Emotrics software. Subjective quality of life outcomes, including the Facial Clinimetric Evaluation (FaCE) Scale and Synkinesis Assessment Questionnaire (SAQ), were also assessed. Results: 14/22 NT and 6/6 FGMT patients met inclusion criteria having both pre-and postoperative photo documentation. NT increased oral commissure excursion from 0.4 mm (SD 5.3) to 2.9 mm (SD 6.8) (P = 0.05), and improved symmetry of excursion (P < 0.001) and angle (P < 0.001). FGMT increased oral commissure excursion from −1.4 mm (SD 3.9) to 2.1 mm (SD 3.7), (P = 0.02), and improved symmetry of excursion (P < 0.001). FaCE scores improved in NT patients postoperatively (P < 0.001). Conclusions: Measuring outcomes, critical analyses, and a multidisciplinary approach are necessary components when building a facial nerve center. At our emerging facial nerve center, we found NT and FGMT procedures improved smile excursion and symmetry, and improved QOL following NT in patients with facial palsy secondary to multiple etiologies.

Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalAnnals of Otology, Rhinology and Laryngology
DOIs
StateAccepted/In press - 2020

Keywords

  • Facial nerve disorders
  • facial nerve
  • facial nerve paralysis
  • facial reanimation
  • free gracilis muscle transfer
  • nerve transfer
  • otolaryngology
  • otology

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Otorhinolaryngology

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