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What is brachial neuritis?

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Quick Answer

Brachial neuritis is a condition that affects the signals sent between the nervous system and other parts of the body, predominantly the shoulder, arms and hands, causing pain and limited function, according to Johns Hopkins Medicine. It is a type of disease known as peripheral neuropathy.

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Full Answer

The two types of brachial neuritis are called acute brachial neuritis and brachial plexus injury, according to Johns Hopkins Medicine. While brachial plexus injury occurs as a result of an injury or an illness, the cause of acute brachial neuritis is unknown and can occur without warning. Doctors typically diagnose the disease by identifying symptoms and performing electromyography and other tests to identify the exact type of nerve damage.

Initial symptoms include weakness and pain, both of which typically only effect one side of the body, according to Johns Hopkins Medicine. After a short time, these symptoms evolve, leading to further weakness, a loss of control over muscle movement and possibly full paralysis. Instead of pain, a patient may lose sensation in the affected area.

Pain medication is commonly used to treat some of the disease's symptoms. Other possible treatments include lifestyle changes, such as regular exercise and healthy diet. Symptoms are not usually permanent, with recovery time lasting anywhere from months to years.

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