Who Is at Risk of a Brachial Plexus Injury?

By Hardwick & Pendergast, P.S. on September 21, 2016

A brachial plexus injury is an injury that occurs to the network of nerves that are connected to the spinal cord and send signals from the spinal cord to the arm, hand, and shoulder. Signs of a brachial plexus injury include weakness in the arm, slow reflexes, lack of muscle control, decreased sensation, and ultimately paralysis. While some injuries recover on their own, others require physical therapy, splinting, and even surgery. If the injury is caused through negligence, such as doctor malpractice or a negligent driver, that individual will be liable for the damages suffered by the victim. Both adults and children are at risk of a brachial plexus injury, though the cause of the injury varies by age.


Approximately 1.2% of adults have or have had a brachial plexus injury. 89% of sufferers are males, and 50% of sufferers are young adults between nineteen and thirty-fours years old. The most common cause of a brachial plexus injury in adults  is an accident. Anywhere from 44 to 70% of injuries are caused by car accidents, motorcycle accidents, bicycle accidents, athletic injuries, and workplace accidents.


Brachial plexus injuries are more commonly seen in children during childbirth. During pregnancy, many infants rotate in utero, causing difficulties during the birthing process. Often, physicians need to use forceps or force to assist the mother with birth. This can cause a brachial plexus injury when the shoulder or arm is injured in the process. Other causes included heavier infants that cause difficulty during birth, the use of a vacuum to assist with delivery, and glucose intolerance.

Many of these injuries result in Erb’s palsy in which the arm does not have full range of function. For example, it may hang limply by the child’s side, may not be able to be raised, and/or may lack flexibility. Erb’s palsy is not a muscular injury. It is a nerve injury. Therefore, any subsequent treatment must be treat the underlying spinal and nerve damage. With Erb’s palsy, on top of the other common methods of treatment, many doctors attempt nerve transfers, cutting the muscle to increase flexibility, and rotating the muscle and attaching it to the biceps.

Consult with Seattle Personal Injury Attorneys Today about Medical Malpractice

If you or a loved one fell victim to a spinal cord injury due to medical malpractice, the experienced Seattle spinal cord injury attorneys at Hardwick & Pendergast, P.S. can assist you with pursuing compensation for the damage caused by the physician’s negligence. Call us today to schedule a free case evaluation at (888) 288-3860.

Related Articles:

Posted in: Spinal Cord Injury

Our Case Results

Degloving Injury$2,400,000
Degloving Injury
from defective power winch.
Wrongful Death$1,925,000
Wrongful Death
from head-on van accident.
Rollover Accident$1,925,000
Rollover Accident
resulting in wrongful death.
Wrongful Death$1,625,000
Wrongful Death
from highway design defect.
Car Accident$595,000
Car Accident
injuries to 47-year-old woman.
Wrongful Death$460,695
Wrongful Death
oncoming traffic accident.
Rear-End Collision$450,000
Rear-End Collision
resulting in lower back injury.
Car Accident$390,000
Car Accident
resulting in fractured leg.
Car Sideswipe$390,000
Car Sideswipe
resulting in injured back.
Head-On Collision$372,000
Head-On Collision
resulting in fractured pelvis.
Car Accident$360,000
Car Accident
resulting in lower back injury.
Car Accident$275,000
Car Accident
resulting in jaw fracture.
Overturned Truck$230,000
Overturned Truck
resulting in broken ribs.
Head-On Collision$230,000
Head-On Collision
resulting in shoulder injury.
Motorcycle Accident$225,000
Motorcycle Accident
resulting in leg fracture.

Written by Joseph Pendergast, this book is designed to help people who have suffered a personal injury understand their rights and the steps to take to be sure they get the compensation they deserve.

Connect With Us

Share This Page

Our Office

Hardwick & Pendergast, P.S.
555 South Renton Village Pl. Suite 640
Renton, WA 98057
(888) 228-3860
(425) 228-3860 / (253) 445-3860

From Our Blog

Are You Safe During the 100 Deadly Days?

By Hardwick & Pendergast, P.S.

Disclaimer: The legal information presented at this site should not be construed to be formal legal advice, nor the formation of a lawyer or attorney client relationship. Any results set forth herein are based upon the facts of that particular case and do not represent a promise or guarantee. Please contact an attorney for a consultation on your particular traffic accident matter. This web site is not intended to solicit clients for matters outside of the State of Washington.

© 2018 Hardwick & Pendergast, P.S. - All rights reserved. Serving the communities throughout Washington, including Bellevue, Renton and Seattle.

Website Design, SEO and Legal Internet Marketing by: SLS ConsultingSLS Consulting | Privacy | Disclaimer |Blog Sitemap |Blog Archives