Description

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

Symptoms may include a limp or paralyzed arm; lack of muscle control in the arm, hand, or wrist; and a lack of feeling or sensation in the arm or hand. Brachial plexus injuries can occur as a result of shoulder trauma, tumors, or inflammation. 

There is a rare syndrome called Parsonage-Turner Syndrome, or brachial plexitis, which causes inflammation of the brachial plexus without any obvious shoulder injury. This syndrome can begin with severe shoulder or arm pain followed by weakness and numbness.

In infants, brachial plexus injuries may happen during birth if the baby’s shoulder is stretched during passage in the birth canal.

What you can expect from therapy

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 for brachial plexus injuries includes physical therapy, and/or occupational therapy, and in some cases surgery. Therapy will focus on exercises and a home education program for the shoulder, arm, and hand.

Parent involvement is encouraged and strongly recommended to help carryover skills.

Learn more about how HealthReach therapists can help

Schedule your initial consultation today by calling us at 1-262-780-0707.

Click here to see our locations and to find a therapist near you.

Resources

Visit our resource center for videos and more information on occupational, physical and speech therapy.

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KidReach pediatric therapy specialists, Milwaukee, Brookfield, Hales Corners, Wisconsin