Connection types between the spinal root of the accessory nerve and the posterior roots of the C2–C6 spinal nerves

Department of Anatomy, Faculty of Medicine, Ege University, 35100 Bornova, Izmir, Turkey.
Anatomia Clinica (Impact Factor: 1.05). 03/2009; 31(6):419-23. DOI: 10.1007/s00276-009-0460-8
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT The aim of this study was to demonstrate the connection types and frequency between the accessory nerve and the posterior roots of the C2-C6 cervical nerves.
The cranial cervical regions of 49 specimens from 27 human cadavers were used for the present study under an operating microscope.
Five different connection types between the accessory nerve and the posterior roots of the cervical nerves were recorded and photographed (types A-F). One of these types was not described previously in literature (type F). All connections between the posterior roots of the C2-C6 spinal nerves and the accessory nerve were at the level of the C2 segment. Type B was the most frequently seen type in our series. One of the rootlets of the cervical posterior root joined the accessory nerve without a connection to the spinal cord in type B.
The clinical importance of these connections is especially noticed during the radical neck dissection as it may lead to the development of the shoulder-arm syndrome.

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