Peripheral Nerve Surgery

The Peripheral Nerve Surgery Service at Massachusetts General Hospital treats peripheral nerve injuries, tumors and other disorders affecting the network of nerves that link the brain and spinal cord to other parts of the body.

Our Approach
Advanced Treatment of Peripheral Nerve Issues

As one of the only centers in the northeastern United States specializing in surgical treatment of peripheral nervous system disorders, the Peripheral Nerve Surgery Service at Massachusetts General Hospital offers advanced treatment options to restore sensation, movement and motor skills.

Our service treats all peripheral nerve issues, including:
  • Traumatic peripheral nerve injuries including brachial plexus injury, major peripheral nerve injury and iatrogenic injury
  • Tumors of the peripheral nerve  including schwannomas, neurofibroma and sarcoma
  • Carpal tunnel syndrome and other compressive neuropathies .
Our staff works closely with the departments of Anesthesia, Neurology, Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, Plastic & Reconstructive Surgery, and many others to promote positive outcomes for our patients.
A Multidisciplinary Program
  • Optimal Care
  • Providing Optimal Treatment
  • A Pioneer in Neurocritical Care
  • The Best Care for Our Patients
Restoring Injured Nerves

Although peripheral nerves are able to heal themselves after minor injuries, serious injuries may require surgery.

Our surgeons specialize in treating nerve injuries throughout the body. We have extensive experience treating injuries to the brachial plexus, a network of nerves near the neck and shoulder that control the shoulder, arm and hand. We also offer specialized treatments to help restore nerves damaged during previous surgeries or other medical procedures (iatrogenic injuries).

Our surgeons are at the forefront of developing new techniques for reconstructing peripheral nerves severed or damaged by injury or tumor. One highly sophisticated procedure transfers healthy nerves from elsewhere in the body to a damaged area to "reanimate" body parts and restore normal functionality and feeling.

Patient Focused - Clinical Services

Treating Carpal Tunnel Syndrome

Our surgeons treat carpal tunnel syndrome using either open surgery, making an incision in the palm of your hand, to relieve the pressure that is causing pain, tingling or numbness.

We also diagnose and treat other compression neuropathies that may be the result of tumors, injury or other causes.

The Best Care for Our Patients is Our Goal

Before any surgical procedure, your care team will work together to develop a comprehensive treatment plan that includes treatment, recovery and rehabilitation.

Collaborating for Comprehensive Care

Mass General takes a team approach to patient care. Your neurosurgeon will coordinate all of your care with a team of peripheral nerve specialists, including neurologists, radiologists, pathologists, physical therapists, orthopedic surgeons and rehabilitation therapists.

To determine the best treatment approach, your neurosurgeon will conduct a thorough physical examination and may order diagnostic tests, including:

  • Computed tomography (CT) scans
  • Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) scans
  • Electromyogram (EMG)
  • Nerve conduction studies
  • Tumor biopsies
  • Nerve biopsies
The Department of Neurosurgery has surgeons who specialize in all phases of neurological surgery for comprehensive management of brain, spinal cord, and peripheral nerve diseases and disorders. The subspecialties of the neurosurgical department include:

  • AneurysmAVMBrain Aneurysm & AVM Center - The Endovascular and Open Vascular Neurosurgery Program at Massachusetts General Hospital specializes in Neuroendovascular problems of the brain and spinal cord, including brain aneurysms, arteriovenous malformations (AVMs) and carotid disease.
    For patients with aneurysms and arteriovenous malformations (AVMs) as well as other neurovascular problems of the brain and spinal cord. Including the Neurovascular News; - A newsletter with information regarding carotid endarterectomy to prevent stroke, transient ischemic attack or TIA; brain aneurysms; arteriovenous malformations and other vascular lesions affecting the brain and spinal cord with information on the MGH Brain AVM and Aneurysm Center. Information on the MGH Interventional Neuroradiology Center.
    ...read more...
  • BrainTumorMGH Brain Tumor Center - The Stephen E. and Catherine Pappas Center for Neuro-Oncology at Massachusetts General Hospital offers the most advanced care for patients with brain tumors and nervous system tumors.
    A coordinated, multidisciplinary approach to the care of adult and pediatric patients with tumors of the nervous system as well as neurologic complications of cancer.
    Malignant Tumors: Information regarding malignant tumors of the brain, spine, and peripheral nerves. Benign Tumors: Information about benign brain tumors including meningioma, epidermoid, dermoid, hemangioblastoma, colloid cyst, subependymal giant cell astrocytoma, pleomorphic xanthoastrocytoma, and craniopharyngioma.
    ...read more...
  • CranialBaseCenterMGH / MEEI Cranial Base Center - Run jointly by Massachusetts General Hospital and the Massachusetts Eye and Ear Infirmary (MEEI), the Cranial Base Center treats tumors and other cranial nerve disorders.
    A joint program of the Departments of Otolaryngology, Neurosurgery, and Radiation Oncology dedicated to the evaluation and treatment of patients with cranial base lesions.
    A Multidisciplinary Approach to Rare, Complex Tumors - Because of their location close to a dense concentration of critical structures (the cranial nerves, spinal cord, and major blood vessels to and from the brain), neoplasms of the cranial base — the bony interface separating the brain from the structures outside the cranium — are among the most complex and challenging conditions to treat. Whether benign or malignant, cranial base tumors may be equally problematic; depending on their location, they can affect vision, hearing, olfaction, speech, swallowing, movement, or cognition.
    ...read more...
  • PituitaryTumorPituitary Tumor & Neuroendocrine Clinical Center - The Neuroendocrine Surgical Service at Massachusetts General Hospital evaluates, treats and manages care for patients with pituitary and hypothalamic tumors and other complex disorders. Treatment for adenomas sometimes includes transsphenoidal surgery.
    A multidisciplinary approach to patients with pituitary and hypothalamic disorders. Including the Neuroendocrine Center Bulletin - A newsletter with information regarding pituitary tumors. Information on acromegaly, Cushing's disease or syndrome, prolactinoma, chromophobe or nonfunctioning pituitary adenoma, and thyrotroph adenomas.
    ...read more...
  • NeuroSpineNeurosurgery Spine Service - The Neurosurgical Spine Service at Massachusetts General Hospital specializes in neurosurgical treatment of the entire spectrum of spine disorders, providing services from diagnosis through surgery and rehabilitation.
    Neurosurgical evaluation of neck and back pain, nerve compression syndromes, herniated intervertebral discs, and spinal cord compression syndromes. Information regarding peripheral nerve (including nerve compression such as carpal tunnel syndrome) and spine surgery.
    - Neurosurgical Service's Spine Evaluation Unit
    - Disc & Spinal Cord Compression
    - Spine & Spinal Cord Tumor
    - Brian D. Silber Spine Tumor Clinic
    ...read more...
  • PediatricNeurosurgeryPediatric & Developmental Neurosurgery - The Pediatric Neurosurgical Service, part of MassGeneral Hospital for Children in Boston, diagnoses and treats all neurosurgical conditions of infants, children and adolescents.
    A multidisciplinary team including pediatric neuroncologists and pediatric medical oncologists for the surgical treatment of pediatric brain and spinal tumors. Surgery of developmental anomalies presenting prenatally, in infancy, childhood, or adulthood including tethered spinal cord, spina bifida, syringomyelia, myelomeningocele, hydrocephalus, craniosynostosis, lipoma, dermal sinus, encephalocele, aqueductal stenosis, myeloschisis, lipomyelomeningocele, split cord malformation, diastematomyelia, Klippel-Feil syndrome, CSF shunts, Dandy-Walker cyst, and Arnold-Chiari malformation.
    ...read more...
  • InterventionalNeuroRadiologyMGH Interventional Neuroradiology Center - A minimally invasive approach in the treatment of vascular diseases of the central nervous system. Conditions in the past that would have required surgical intervention such as aneurysms, vascular malformations, and tumors of the brain, spine, head and neck can be considered for treatment by using an endovascular approach to reach the lesion.
    The Purpose of this Center is to provide a complete range of services for the diagnosis, treatment and rehabilitation of patients with neurovascular problems of the brain and spinal cord. Patients may be referred for consultation only, care in partnership with referring physician, or complete management
    ...read more...
  • NeuroImagingNeuro Imaging Resources - Three-dimensional, 2D and functional imaging to visualize cerebral anatomy to enable neurosurgeons to plan procedures to spare crucial cortical areas, improve patient care and reduce operating room time.
    Three-dimensional visualization of cerebral vasculature from CT angiography provides increased confidence in planning surgical intervention in life-threatening aneurysm cases. 3D views of MRI cortical surface and underlying tissues, with optional functional MRI fused with 3D anatomical display, enables neurosurgeons to plan procedures to spare crucial cortical areas, improve patient care and reduce operating room time.
    The MGH Radiology department with specialized units for Neuroradiology, Interventional Neuroradiology and Radiology 3-D Imaging work as multidisciplinary teams with a focus on neurological conditions.
    ...read more...
  • ProtonBeamRadiosurgeryProton Stereotactic Radiosurgery (Neurosurgery) Center - The Proton Beam Unit was founded in 1962 and has the largest experience with stereotactic radiosurgery of any center in the United States. Information regarding non-invasive proton beam radiosurgery and fractionated radiosurgery for brain and spinal tumors and arteriovenous malformations.
    The Proton Stereotactic Radiosurgery Center provides a complete range of services for the diagnosis and non-invasive proton beam radiosurgery and fractionated radiosurgery treatment for brain and spinal tumors and other vascular malformations.
    ...read more...
  • PeripheralNervePeripheral Nerve Service - The Peripheral Nerve Surgery Service at Massachusetts General Hospital treats peripheral nerve injuries, tumors and other disorders affecting the network of nerves that link the brain and spinal cord to other parts of the body.
    Advanced Treatment of Peripheral Nerve Issues. One of the only centers in the northeastern United States specializing in surgical treatment of peripheral nervous system disorders, the Peripheral Nerve Surgery Service at Massachusetts General Hospital offers advanced treatment options to restore sensation, movement and motor skills.
    ...read more...
  • FunctionalNeurosurgeryFunctional and Stereotactic Neurosurgery Center - The Functional Neurosurgery Center at Massachusetts General Hospital provides expert evaluations and surgical treatment for patients with movement disorders, epilepsy and psychiatric conditions such as obsessive-compulsive disorder and chronic pain.
    Functional and Stereotactic Neurosurgery Center: Including electrophysiologically monitored pallidotomy for medically refractory Parkinson's disease, obsessive compulsive disorder, cancer-related- and chronic-pain syndromes, thalamotomy for disabling tremor and epilepsy surgery for the surgical treatment of medically refractory seizures.
    ...read more...
  • NeurogeneticSurgeryNeurogenetic Surgery Center - Surgical and non-surgical multidisciplinary management of inherited neurologic syndromes including neurofibromatosis type I (Von Recklinghausen's disease) and II, tuberous sclerosis, and Von Hippel-Lindau disease.
    The Center offers a comprehensive initial evaluation to all persons in whom a diagnosis of neurogenetic associated diseases has been suggested or confirmed. In addition to a neurological examination this includes a dermatological evaluation and referral for neuro-ophthalmological evaluation and imaging studies.
    - Neurogenetics Clinic
    - Neurofibromatosis Clinic
    - Von Hippel-Lindau Clinic
    ...read more...
  • NeuroScienceCareNeurosciences Intensive Care Unit - Neurosciences Intensive Care Unit (Neuro ICU) patients receive intensive medical and nursing management for post-surgical and post-interventional conditions, as well as stroke, cerebral hemorrhage, seizure, and head and spinal cord injuries.
    Information on the Neurological Intensive Care Unit (NICU) which provides comprehensive care for seriously ill neurological and neurosurgical patients and Inpatient Information from the Neuroscience Care Units Guest Information System which encompass the Neuroscience, Neurology and Neurosurgery clinical system.
    The MGH Neurointensive Care Unit is a state-of-the-art 18 bed ICU supported by 6-8 full time dedicated Neuro ICU fellows, 8 intensivist faculty, 24 hour video-EEG, portable CT capability, 64-slice helical CT and 1.5-3.0 T MRI with 3D imaging available at all times.
    ...read more...
  • NeuroORNeurosurgery Operating Rooms - Innovative use of technologies to assist surgeons in complex neurological procedures. Information on new intra-operative MRI Imaging, and CT Imaging systems. Use of Stereotactic Neurosurgery for Surgical Case Planning and Optical Tracking Systems (OTS) to define optimal surgical approach.
    Intra-operative mapping by direct cortical stimulation - electrophysiological recordings systems - to map functional anatomy during surgery
    The Neurosurgery ORs features intra-operative imaging, the latest technology in brain tumor removal surgery. Intra-operative MRI and CT scanners provide real-time information, allowing surgeons to monitor a patient’s brain and measure tumor removal at any point during the procedure without moving the patient.
    ...read more...
  • TraumaCriticalCareTrauma, Emergency, Intensive Care, and General Neurosurgery Center - The Spinal Cord and Head Trauma Center, and the NeuroScience Care Units diagnoses and treats patients with severe spinal cord and brain disorders resulting from trauma. Information on Physical Therapy for Brain Injury.
    Massachusetts General Hospital is a Level 1 Adult and Level 1 Pediatric Trauma Center. MGH has been verified as able to treat the highest severity of trauma patient. MGH admits, on average, 2,000 trauma patients and another 2,000 emergency surgery patients per year, and although the vast majority of our patients are from the Boston metropolitan area, patients are referred to our facility from all over the country.
    ...read more...
Other neurosurgical intervention across the spectrum of neuroscience care.

Peripherial Nerve Service - MGH Neurosurgical Service - Wang Ambulatory Care Center - ACC 745 - Phone: 617-643-4102 - Fax: 617-643-4115 - Massachusetts General Hospital - 15 Parkman Street, Boston, Massachusetts 02114