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.

Sunday, August 9, 2015

Sympathectomy - a neurocardiologic disorder

Bilateral thoracic sympathectomies or sympathotomies are done for refractory palmar hyperhidrosis [85–87]. Iontophoresis, botulinum toxin injection, and glycopyrrolate cream are alternatives. Because sweating is mediated mainly by sympathetic cholinergic fibers, autonomic neurosurgery is usually effective; however, a variety of expected and unexpected consequences can result, including ectopic (e.g., plantar) hyperhidrosis, gustatory sweating, Horner syndrome, and decreased heart rate responses to exercise. The latter seems to be related to partial cardiac denervation [88]. Anecdotally, fatigue, altered mood, blunted emotion, and decreased ability to concentrate can develop after bilateral thoracic sympathectomies. 
β-Adrenoceptor blockers are a mainstay of treatment for CPVT. An automated defibrillator may have to be implanted. Treatment for CPVT also includes left sympathectomy. Such treatment leaves open the theoretical possibilities of denervation supersensitivity of cardiac adrenoceptors and compensatory activation of the adrenomedullary hormonal system; however, plasma levels of catecholamines have not been assessed in CPVT with or without therapeutic cardiac denervation.

Table 1. Neurocardiologic disorders that feature abnormal catecholaminergic function
Disorders where abnormal catecholaminergic function is etiologic Hypofunctional states without central neurodegeneration
Acute, primary
Neurocardiogenic syncope Spinal cord transection Acute pandysautonomia Sympathectomy
Acute, secondary
Drug-related (e.g., alcohol, tricyclic antidepressant, chemotherapy, opiate, barbiturates, benzodiazepines, sympatholytics, general anesthesia)
Guillain–Barre syndrome Alcohol
Chronic, primary
Pure autonomic failure
Horner's syndrome
Familial dysautonomia
Carotid sinus syncope
Adie's syndrome Dopamine-β-hydroxylase deficiency