Brachial Plexus Birth Injury

15607020_lBrachial plexus birth injuries are usually preventable, meaning most are the result of medical negligence. Brachial plexus injury is not life-threatening, and does not affect the brain, but it can cause life-time impairment. The injury affects the ability to use the shoulder, arm, hand, and fingers. Parents are often told that brachial plexus injuries are an acceptable risk of vaginal birth. Doctors and other healthcare professionals may initially downplay the seriousness of the injury, robbing the child of early treatment and the chance for the best possible recovery.

What is Brachial Plexus Injury?

The brachial plexus is a network of nerves that start in the neck area and send signals to the shoulder, arm, and hand. Adults can experience brachial plexus injuries, too, as a result of auto accidents, other trauma, and some medical conditions. Brachial plexus birth injuries can result in several impairments including:

  • Erb’s palsy
  • Klumpke’s palsy
  • Horner’s syndrome

Brachial plexus birth injury usually occurs when the baby’s shoulder gets wedged behind the mother’s pubic bone, and the force of trying to deliver the baby stretches and/or tears the brachial plexus nerves. This is referred to as shoulder dystocia.


The risk of brachial plexus injury is eliminated if the child is delivered by caesarian section. However, in some cases, a C-section is not safe or appropriate. In cases where vaginal birth is necessary, there are delivery methods that can prevent the injury.

Getting Help

A child with brachial plexus injury can suffer life-long disability, as well as emotional harm. You may be able to recover substantial compensation to pay for your child’s needs as a result of the injury, but you will need the help of an experienced birth injury attorney. only works with attorneys who have achieved the highest peer-review ratings. Contact us today to find an experienced birth injury attorney in your area.

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