Antegrade versus retrograde facial nerve dissection in benign parotid surgery: Is there a difference in postoperative outcomes? A meta-analysis

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Abstract

Objective The primary aim of this meta-analysis was to test the null hypothesis of no difference in facial nerve dysfunction in studies that compared classical antegrade facial nerve dissection (AFND) versus retrograde facial nerve dissection (RFND) during benign parotid surgery. Methods A comprehensive search of PubMed, the Cochrane Central Register of Controlled Trials, Scopus, Google Scholar, Science Direct and relevant journals was undertaken up to June 27, 2018. Randomized controlled clinical trials (RCTs), controlled clinical trials (CCTs), and retrospective studies aimed at comparing the effect of AFND vs. RFND during parotidectomy were included. The outcome measures included facial nerve dysfunction, Frey's syndrome, recurrence, silaocele, salivary fistula, operating time length of hospital stay, and estimated blood loss. Pooled risk ratio (RR) and weighted mean differences (MD) with 95% confidence intervals were calculated using either a fixed-effects or random-effects model. Results Ten studies; four RCTs and five retrospective studies were included. There were 570 patients (319 in RFND group and 251 in AFND group). 481 patients in 9 studies reported the incidence rate of facial nerve dysfunction. No statistical significant difference was observed between both groups concerning the occurrence of transient or permanent facial nerve paralysis (p = 0.44 and 0.11 respectively). One out 10 studies reported the incidence rate of sialocele, however no statistical difference was observed between the two techniques. There was reduction in the operative time (19.30 min), amount of blood loss (25.08 ml) and amount of healthy salivary tissues removed (12.20 mm) in RFND compared with AFND. Conclusions According to the results of the current review there is no evidence demonstrating a significant advantage of one approach over another, therefore, well-designed standardized RCTs are required.

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Mashrah, M. A., Al-Dhohrah, T. A., Al-Zubeiry, F. A., Yan, L., Al-Hamed, F. S., Zhao, X., & Pan, C. (2018). Antegrade versus retrograde facial nerve dissection in benign parotid surgery: Is there a difference in postoperative outcomes? A meta-analysis. PLoS ONE, 13(10). https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0206028

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