Mental nerve shielding from possible injury during mandibular surgical procedures: technical note

Published:January 06, 2023DOI:


      Injuries to the mental nerve are not an uncommon complication in maxillofacial surgeries. Manipulation close to the mental nerve poses a great risk of nerve injury from drills, bone cutting and trimming burs, and oscillating/reciprocating saws. Nerve injuries can be painful and affect the patient’s quality of life. The accompanying complication of the nerve injury depends on the severity of the damage inflicted and can range from transient hypoesthesia to neuropathic pain or trigeminal neuralgia. It is considered that direct injury to the nerve may lead to permanent damage and more severe postoperative clinical symptoms than indirect injuries caused by nerve stretching or during endosteal implant fixation. This technical note describes a technique for shielding the mental nerve and protecting it from rotary drill injury during mandibular inferior border recontouring, orthognathic surgeries, and mandibular body fracture fixation.


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