Do cutaneous nerves cross the midline?

Stepan Capek, R. Shane Tubbs, Robert J. Spinner

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

14 Scopus citations


Standard cutaneous innervation maps show strict midline demarcation. Although authors of these maps accept variability of peripheral nerve distribution or occasionally even the midline overlap of cutaneous nerves, this concept seems to be neglected by many other anatomists. To support the statement that such transmedian overlap exists, we performed an extensive literature search and found ample evidence for all regions (head/neck, thorax/abdomen, back, perineum, and genitalia) that peripheral nerves cross the midline or communicate across the midline. This concept has substantial clinical implications, most notably in anesthesia and perineural tumor spread. This article serves as a springboard for future anatomical, clinical, and experimental research. Clin. Anat. 28:96-100, 2015.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)96-100
Number of pages5
JournalClinical Anatomy
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 1 2015


  • crossing
  • cutaneous nerves
  • midline
  • midline crossover
  • nerves

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Anatomy
  • Histology


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