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The nerves in the neck that branch out into the arm and make it move and feel are called the brachial plexus. Sometimes, particularly during a difficult delivery, these nerves can be stretched or even torn.
The stretching is between the neck and the shoulder. As a result the nerves which carry the signals to the muscles of the arm can be damaged – that is to say there maybe some degree of paralysis and they may stop moving properly. The nerves most commonly damaged affect movement at the shoulder, elbow and sometimes the wrist and finger joints can be affected. Sometimes, the whole arm can be paralysed.
Nerves can be cut in a sharp injury or crushed or pulled in any other type of accident. Sometimes they can also be injured as a result of fracture or its subsequent fixation. Such nerve injuries will again result in decreased movement or sensation depending on the nerve that is damaged.
There is a very special nerve called the facial nerve that moves your face, helping you to smile, frown, eat and move your eyebrows. Sometimes, it doesn’t work and it can cause problems with making facial expressions and with eating. At Alder hey we have a very special service that deals with these problems. Click here to find out more.
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