The amount of compensatory sweating depends on the patient, the damage that the white rami communicans incurs, and the amount of cell body reorganization in the spinal cord after surgery.
Other potential complications include inadequate resection of the ganglia, gustatory sweating, pneumothorax, cardiac dysfunction, post-operative pain, and finally Horner’s syndrome secondary to resection of the stellate ganglion.

After severing the cervical sympathetic trunk, the cells of the cervical sympathetic ganglion undergo transneuronic degeneration
After severing the sympathetic trunk, the cells of its origin undergo complete disintegration within a year.

Monday, July 8, 2013

sympathectomy leads to fluctuation of vasoconstriction alternated with vasodilation in an unstable fashion

"To quote Nashold, referring to sympathectomy, "Ill- advised surgery may tend to magnify the entire symptom complex"(38). Sympathectomy is aimed at achieving vasodilation. The neurovascular instability (vacillation and instability of vasoconstrictive function), leads to fluctuation of vasoconstriction alternated with vasodilation in an unstable fashion (39). Following sympathectomy the involved extremity shows regional hyper - and hypothermia in contrast, the blood flow and skin temperature on the non- sympathectomized side are significantly lower after exposure to a cold environment (39). This phenomenon may explain the reason for spread of CRPS. In the first four weeks after sympathectomy, the Laser Doppler flow study shows an increased of blood flow and hyperthermia in the extremity (40). Then, after four weeks, the skin temperature and vascular perfusion slowly decrease and a high amplitude vasomotor constriction develops reversing any beneficial effect of surgery (39). According to Bonica , "about a dozen patients with reflex sympathetic dystrophy (RSD) in whom I have carried out preoperative diagnostic sympathetic block with complete pain relief, sympathectomy produced either partial or no relief (40)"

Chronic Pain

Reflex Sympathetic Dystrophy : Prevention and Management
Front Cover
CRC PressINC, 1993 - Medical - 202 pages