Brachial Plexus Injuries
The Brachial Plexus
The brachial plexus is a network of nerves that connect the spinal cord to the muscles of the shoulder, arm and hand. These nerves run from the neck under the collar bone and into the arm to provide both movement and sensation. When an injury strikes this region or pulls the head away from the shoulder, these nerves can suffer damage.
Milder injuries will result in tingling in the arm and weakness, which will generally go away. More severe injuries result in numbness and paralysis to part or all of the arm and hand. In these cases, it is important to determine whether the injury will recover with time or whether surgery will be required to restore movement to the arm. The Peripheral Nerve Center provides a comprehensive approach to the diagnosis and management of these disorders.
At the Center, you will undergo an MRI to localize the injury and determine whether there are ruptures (nerves that are severed) or avulsions (nerves that are separated from the spinal cord). Further confirmation of the type of injury can be provided by neurophysiological studies including electromyograms (EMG) and nerve conduction studies (NCS).
With this information, the physicians will develop a plan to best restore movement to your arm as quickly as possible. This may involve surgery, therapy, pain control techniques and other types of treatment to provide for the most comprehensive management of the injury. It is important to remember that the earlier you are seen following an injury, the more treatment options are available to improve function.
The Multidisciplinary Brachial Plexus Treatment Team
For more information, call 858-246-0674.