What are the signs of a spinal accessory nerve (SAN) injury?

Updated: Feb 09, 2018
  • Author: Rohan R Walvekar, MD; Chief Editor: Arlen D Meyers, MD, MBA  more...
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Answer

Limited or loss of sustained abduction of the shoulder is the most common sign.

A full passive range of motion may eventually progress to decreased passive range of motion due to adhesive capsulitis (frozen shoulder).

The ipsilateral shoulder may droop.

Scapular winging or prominence of the medial border of the scapula and protraction may be found.

Internal rotation of the humeral head may be found.

Atrophy of trapezius muscle may be found.

Sternoclavicular joint hypertrophy or subluxation may be caused by abnormal stress on the medial clavicular head after the loss of the trapezius muscle support. [26]


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