Nerve Repositioning

Nerve repositioning, also known as nerve lateralization or nerve transpositioning, is a surgical procedure whereby the course of the inferior alveolar nerve is redirected to allow the placement of longer implants in a mandible with extensive resorption of the posterior ridge. Alveolar nerve repositioning may also be done as part of a procedure to remove cysts or benign tumors of the mandible. For implant patients experiencing edentulous atrophy in posterior mandibles, repositioning of the alveolar nerve is often the only way a fixed prosthesis or implant can be properly placed. Due to the risks involved in repositioning the alveolar nerve, extreme care and precision must be demonstrated during surgical procedures to avoid damage to the nerve. Damage can cause short-term, long-term, or permanent issues and impair a patient’s ability to experience sensory information. It can also cause pain, numbness, and in some cases, paralysis. Nerve repositioning is done if there are not other suitable implant placement options.