Which conditions are involved in the pathophysiology of brachial neuritis (BN)?

Updated: Oct 13, 2020
  • Author: Nigel L Ashworth, MBChB, MSc, FRCPC; Chief Editor: Milton J Klein, DO, MBA  more...
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The investigators suggested that inflammation-related constriction precedes torsion, with the torsion encouraged by limb rotation. [20]

Using magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) to evaluate patients with brachial neuritis, a study by Sneag et al suggested that instead of being associated with changes to all or part of the brachial plexus proper, the condition involves one or more mononeuropathies. [21]

A study by Ferrante and Wilbourn of 281 patients with sporadic brachial neuritis found through electrodiagnostic testing that out of 379 assessable events, 174 (46%) involved a single nerve, with another 205 (54%) being multifocal. The investigators also found that most bouts of brachial neuritis purely involved motor nerves, with the second greatest number involving mostly motor nerves and the fewest involving a more even mix of sensory and motor nerves. [22]

A study by Lustenhouwer et al indicated that in patients with brachial neuritis, alterations occur in the cerebral sensorimotor representations of the affected upper limb. The results were derived from a hand laterality judgement task, in which individuals with brachial neuritis demonstrated less accuracy in laterality judgements of their affected limb than did controls. The report suggested that in brachial neuritis, “maladaptive central neuroplasticity may occur in response to peripheral nerve damage, thereby contributing to motor dysfunction” and that treatments aimed at changing cerebral sensorimotor representations may be effective against the condition. [23]

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