Brachial Plexus Injury Attorney
Experienced Brachial Plexus Injury Attorneys in Gainesville
According to the U.S. National Library of Medicine at the National Institutes of Health, the brachial plexus can be defined as “a network of nerves that conducts signals from the spine, shoulder, arm and hand.” An injury occurs when these nerves are stretched, compressed, or in extreme cases, completely separated from the spinal cord.
Brachial plexus injuries can occur in a variety of situations. While many are fairly minor and only require minimal recovery time, others are much more severe and require surgery and extensive therapy.
Symptoms of a brachial plexus injury vary and depend on the location and severity of the injury. Common symptoms include:
- Loss of feeling or sensation in your arm or hand
- Muscle weakness in your hand, arm or shoulder
- Limp or paralyzed arm
- Lack of muscle control in your arm, hand or wrist
Types of brachial plexus injury
Which type of brachial plexus injury you have is determined by the location and severity of your injury.
- Avulsion: The spinal cord nerve is completely pulled and has no chance of recovery.
- Rupture: The nerve is stretched or partially torn but not at the spinal cord.
- Neurapraxia: The nerve is slightly stretched or compressed, but is still attached and not torn. This type of injury is the least severe and has the shortest recovery time.
- Axonotemesis: Axons, which can be compared to copper filaments in electrical wire, are severed, but chances of recovery are generally pretty good.
- Neurotemesis: Essentially means the entire nerve is severed. Chances of recovery are fairly poor.
- Neuroma: A type of tumor that grows out of a tangled web of divide axons. If the axons are able to regenerate, chances of recovery are fairly good.
Determining the exact type of brachial plexus injury requires electro-diagnostic studies, imaging studies (CT/MRI scan) and clinical examination. Just diagnosing the injury can be very costly and time consuming.
Causes of Brachial Plexus Injury
In adults, trauma from a car, truck or motorcycle accident is the most common cause of a brachial plexus injury. Slips and falls and any high-intensity contact sports like football or hockey can also cause nerve damage in the spine, shoulders, arms and hands.
Brachial plexus injury can also occur during the child birthing process. For example, if the baby’s shoulder becomes lodged against the mother’s pelvic bone, nerve damage can occur. Also, if the baby is having trouble getting through the birth canal, forceps or a vacuum may be used to help deliver the baby. If these instruments are not used delicately, a baby can sustain nerve damage to his or her neck and shoulders.
Obtaining Compensation For a Brachial Plexus Injury
If your injury requires surgery, long-term therapy and a complete change in your living circumstances, you may have grounds for a claim if the injury was caused by someone else’s negligence.
If the cause of the injury was an accident of some sort, you can pursue a personal injury claim for damages against the at-fault party. You will need to prove the other driver, or the property owner in the case of a slip and fall, had a duty of care and that they violated this duty. You must also prove that the breach of this duty was the cause of your injury.
If the injury is the result of an error during the birthing process, you will need to pursue a medical malpractice claim. Again, you will need to prove the doctor or hospital had a duty of care and that a breach in this duty was the cause of your child’s injury.
Just because an injury or complication occurs during childbirth doesn’t mean the doctors or medical staff are guilty of malpractice. However, if the doctor failed to anticipate any issues or otherwise failed to meet the generally accepted standard of care, you may have grounds for a claim for any additional treatment, long-term care, lost wages, pain and suffering and more.
Experienced Attorneys at Warner, Sechrest & Butts Passionately Fight For the Rights of Injured Victims.
If you’ve been in an accident and are experiencing any of the symptoms above, your first step should be to seek medical attention to determine if you have sustained a brachial plexus injury. Next, if the injury was caused by an accident (or medical error in the case of your child), you should immediately reach out to an experienced injury attorney who can help you determine fault and pursue a claim for damages.
Attorneys Marc Warner and Michael Sechrest and the support staff possess extensive experience at determining if your injury was caused by negligence, and if so, how to go about obtaining compensation.
Contact our office today to discuss your case.