Bone Joint J 2015;97-B:1345–9

Neurolysis for the treatment of sciatic nerve palsy associated with total hip arthroplasty

G. J. Regev, M. Drexler, R. Sever, T. Dwyer, M. Khashan, Z. Lidar, K. Salame, S. Rochkind

Sciatic nerve palsy following total hip arthroplasty (THA) is a relatively rare yet potentially devastating complication. The purpose of this case series was to report the results of patients with a sciatic nerve palsy who presented between 2000 and 2010, following primary and revision THA and were treated with neurolysis. A retrospective review was made of 12 patients (eight women and four men), with sciatic nerve palsy following THA. The mean age of the patients was 62.7 years (50 to 72; standard deviation 6.9). They underwent interfascicular neurolysis for sciatic nerve palsy, after failing a trial of non-operative treatment for a minimum of six months. Following surgery, a statistically and clinically significant improvement in motor function was seen in all patients. The mean peroneal nerve score function improved from 0.42 (0 to 3) to 3 (1 to 5) (p < 0.001). The mean tibial nerve motor function score improved from 1.75 (1 to 4) to 3.92 (3 to 5) (p = 0.02).The mean improvement in sensory function was a clinically negligible 1 out of 5 in all patients. In total, 11 patients reported improvement in their pain following surgery.


We conclude that neurolysis of the sciatic nerve has a favourable prognosis in patients with a sciatic nerve palsy following THA. Our findings suggest that surgery should not be delayed for > 12 months following injury.

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