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Brachial Plexus

What Is Brachial Plexus?

Brachial plexus injury is a loss of movement or weakness of the arm. It occurs when the collection of nerves around the shoulder (the brachial plexus) are damaged during birth. Brachial Plexus injuries are the most common type of birth injuries, caused be medical negligence. If your infant has suffered a brachial plexus birth injury, you have the legal right to team with a birth injury lawyer to have your case heard.

What Are The Causes?

There are several factors that can increase the risk of a brachial plexus injury such as: breech delivery, larger than average newborn, and difficulty delivering the baby’s shoulder after the head has already come through the birth canal. Brachial plexus injuries are caused by when the brachial plexus, a network of fibers running from the spine throughout the arm, neck and armpits, is damaged by the following:

  • The infant’s head and neck pulling toward the side as the shoulders pass through the birth canal.
  • Pressure on the infant’s raised arms during a breech delivery.
  • Pulling on an infant’s arm during a head-first delivery

There are different forms of brachial plexus injuries in an infant. The type depends on the amount of arm paralysis:
Usually only one arm is affected.

  • Erb’s paralysis effects the upper and lower arm.
  • Klumpke paralysis affects the hand and the infant may have a drooping eyelid on the opposite side.

What Are The Symptoms?

Symptoms of brachial plexus injuries are typically seen right away or soon following the birth. These symptoms include the following:

  • Absent moro reflex on the affected side.
  • Decreased grip on the affected side.
  • Arm bent at elbow and held against the body.
  • No movement in the infant’s upper arm, lower arm, or hand.

How Shea Law Group Can Help

If you feel that your infant’s brachial plexus injury was caused due to the negligence of a medical provider, it is important to speak with a Chicago birth injury attorney immediately. To determine if medical negligence contributed to your infant’s birth injury, we will examine records that were kept from the beginning of your pregnancy through birth. At Shea Law Group we will provide you with a free consultation to discuss the details of your case, call us at (877) 365-0040. We understand that brachial plexus injury cases can be very complex, which is why retaining an experienced birth injury attorney can be so important.