Brachial plexus is a network of nerves that runs from your spine to your shoulders, supplying your upper extremities (fingers, hands, forearms and shoulders) with the nervous energy it needs to control muscle and movement. When this network of nerves is twisted, bruised, ruptured, ripped, or avulsed, brachial plexus injury can occur. Brachial plexus injury may obstruct the supply of nervous system to the upper extremities, making it difficult, sometimes even impossible, for someone to control his arm movement.

There are many possible causes of brachial plexus injury. Injuries from contact sports, such as basketball and football, may result in brachial plexus injury. Motorcycle and other road-related incidents may also cause this condition. In instances when a portion of the brachial plexus is damaged during labor, a type of brachial plexus injury called Erb’s palsy may occur.

Erb’s palsy is characterized by complete or partial paralysis of the biceps and the lower arm. Babies with Erb’s palsy may also have a shoulder that is “hanging” and is rotated forward. The affected wrist may also be twisted inwards, and muscle weakness is noticeable.

According to the website of the Resmini Law Offices, Erb’s palsy can primarily be a result of medical negligence. A medical staff that is reckless or untrained may “pull” the baby harshly during labor, lugging the baby’s head away from its shoulder and causing brachial plexus damage. Wrong instrumentation during assisted delivery may also increase the risk of Erb’s palsy. Other factors associated with Erb’s palsy include mother’s small pelvic size, baby’s large size, heavy birth weight, and breech position.

Children with untreated Erb’s palsy may have an affected arm that’s smaller in girth and in length, and may also suffer from muscle atrophy (weakness). As such, it is important that Erb’s palsy is treated, either with surgery, with physical therapy, or both, to prevent these life-long complications.

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Healthcare providers in the United States are among the most medically advanced physicians in the world. In addition to rigorous schooling, prospective physicians must have years of first-hand experience in their residencies before they are able to establish themselves independently in the medical field. For these reasons, people often rightfully put their trust and confidence in the abilities of their healthcare provider.

Unfortunately, when a doctor makes a mistake the consequences can be devastating to the patient. If the physician or hospital staff negligently injures a patient, the injured party can file a medical malpractice case. Medical malpractice can manifest itself as misdiagnosis, delayed diagnosis, improper treatment, surgical mistakes, pharmaceutical errors, or hospital staff negligence. In order to avoid being the victim of medical malpractice, patients need to be assertive and communicative when consulting with a physician. In most cases though, medical malpractice can not be avoided since it isn’t any fault of the patient.

A notable subgroup of the medical malpractice classification is surgical errors. According to the Goings Law Firm, LLC website, surgeries naturally pose a higher risk to the patient’s health because of the administration of anesthesia and invasive nature of the process. However, since they pose a higher risk, surgeons need to practice the utmost amount of caution while operating. Something like performing a surgery on the wrong patient or removing the wrong organ can be incredibly costly to the patient as well as the hospital and should never happen. Nevertheless, these mistakes are made on occasion, and are clear-cut instances of medical malpractice. This means the hospital or doctor can be held accountable for their mistakes.

If a surgeon’s negligence causes stroke, paralysis, brain injury, infection, bleeding, or death, the victim and victim’s family are entitled to pursue financial compensation. In some cases, post-operative exams have revealed surgical utensils, like scalpels and spectrums, within the body of the patient. Even if an injury has not been sustained, having to re-operated in order to remove the tool is cause for compensation.

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