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Brachial Plexus Injuries

 

 
 

The brachial plexus is a network of nerves that conducts signals from the spine to the shoulder, arm, and hand. Brachial plexus injuries are caused by damage to those nerves.

Symptoms may include

  • A limp or paralyzed arm
  • Lack of muscle control in the arm, hand, or wrist
  • Lack of feeling or sensation in the arm or hand

Brachial plexus injuries can occur as a result of shoulder trauma, tumors, or inflammation. Sometimes they happen during childbirth when a baby's shoulders become stuck during delivery and the nerves stretch or tear.

Some brachial plexus injuries may heal without treatment. Many children who are injured during birth improve or recover by 3 to 4 months of age. Treatment includes physical therapy and, in some cases, surgery.

NIH: National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke

 

 

 
 
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Illustration of the shoulder and arm featuring the brachial plexus

National Institutes of Health

 

  • MedlinePlus links to health information from the National Institutes of Health and other federal government agencies. MedlinePlus also links to health information from non-government Web sites. See our disclaimer about external links and our quality guidelines.

 

 

 

MedlinePlus links to health information from the National Institutes of Health and other federal government agencies. MedlinePlus also links to health information from non-government Web sites. See our disclaimer about external links and our quality guidelines.