Children's Hospital Colorado
Hand and Upper Extremity Program

Brachial Plexus Injury/Brachial Plexus Birth Palsy

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What is the brachial plexus?

The brachial plexus is a group of nerves between the neck and the shoulder. The nerves start in the spinal cord in the neck and then branch into the arm, forearm and hand. These nerves give the arm, forearm and hand their feeling and move the muscles in these areas.

What is a brachial plexus injury?

A brachial plexus injury is an injury to the brachial nerves. These injuries differ in how severe they are, how much they will improve and how long it will take for them to improve. The nerves can be harmed by pressure, being stretched, torn or even cut.

What is brachial plexus birth palsy?

Brachial plexus birth palsy is an injury to the brachial plexus nerves that usually happens when a baby is being born. Brachial plexus birth palsy is one of the most common injuries that can occur during birth. It is most common in difficult deliveries. It is important to know that the injury may have happened to deliver the baby safely and avoid more serious injury.

Next steps

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Get to know our pediatric experts.

Sarah Sibbel, MD

Sarah Sibbel, MD

Orthopaedic Surgery, Hand Surgery

Frank Scott, MD

Frank Scott, MD

Hand Surgery

Cailin Brazeau, PA-C

Cailin Brazeau, PA-C

Physician Assistant