What conditions or events can trigger 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 exact cause of brachial neuritis is unknown, but the condition is thought to be associated with an immune-mediated response to an as yet poorly understood trigger. Brachial neuritis has been linked to many antecedent events or illnesses, as follows:

  • Viral infection (particularly of the upper respiratory tract)

  • Bacterial infection (eg, pneumonia, diphtheria, typhoid)

  • Parasitic infestation

  • Surgery [8]

  • Trauma (not related to shoulder)

  • Vaccinations (eg, influenza, tetanus, diphtheria, tetanus toxoids, pertussis [DPT], smallpox, swine flu)

  • Childbirth

  • Miscellaneous medical investigative procedures (eg, lumbar puncture, administration of radiologic dye)

  • Systemic illness (eg, polyarteritis nodosa, lymphoma, systemic lupus erythematosus, temporal arteritis, Ehlers-Danlos syndrome)

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