The authors surveyed 81 patients in Norway 6 to 10 years after successful finger replantation (30 patients) or revascularization (51 patients). Eighty percent of respondents reported cold hypersensitivity; described as mild or moderate in most cases. When comparing the replantation and revascularization groups, there were more patients in the replantation group who reported cold hypersensitivity. Of the 74 patients employed at injury, 7% had changed jobs and 4% were not working. One-third of the respondents experienced limitations in their leisure activities because of cold complaints.
This study confirms a high prevalence of cold hypersensitivity several years after finger replantation or revascularization (Dabernig et al, Int J Surg 2006; Klein-Weigel et al, Arch Orthop Trauma Surg 2007). The study findings also suggest greater cold sensitivity after finger replantation when compared to revascularization; conceivably due to greater tissue injury. The affect of cold hypersensitivity on work and leisure activities in Norway studied cannot be extrapolated to populations in other countries given the influences of different climates, cultures, social systems, and legal environments.