Shoulder injuries and brachial plexus neuropathy

Shoulder injuries can affect the brachial plexus nerves, which are located along the inside of the upper arm from the armpit to the elbow. Contact sports injuries, falls, and motor vehicle crashes are the most common causes of brachial plexus injuries.

Symptoms of brachial plexus nerve injuries (neuropathy) include:

  • A sharp, burning pain that radiates down the affected arm.
  • Tingling.
  • Numbness.
  • A temporary loss of feeling.
  • Weakness.
  • Paralysis.

The terms "burners" or "stingers" are used for short-term brachial plexus symptoms; home treatment measures will help relieve these symptoms. Home treatment includes pain medications, rest, a shoulder splint, and gentle stretching exercises.

Last Updated: September 19, 2009

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