Main Navigation
Wilson & Parlett
301-952-1311
En Español

Understanding Erb’s palsy

Here at Wilson & Parlett in Maryland, we understand that as an expectant mom, you become enormously excited whenever you think about the approaching birth of your beautiful new child. We also understand, however, that despite the precautions you take during your pregnancy to ensure your developing baby’s continued health and safety, you cannot control every aspect of your baby’s birth and delivery.

Birth injuries represent a possibility over which you have little or no control. For instance, your baby could suffer an injury during his or her birthing process that results in Erb’s palsy. While this injury happens in a scant 0.5 to 2.6 percent of live U.S. births, its results can be catastrophic.

Causes of Erb’s palsy

As the American Association of Neuromuscular & Electrodiagnostic Medicine explains, Erb’s palsy affects your child’s brachial plexus nerves, i.e., those that extend from the spinal cord to the armpits and from there to the shoulders and arms. If the birthing process stretches these nerves, the resulting damage to them could weaken your baby’s arms, reduce feeling in them, or, if really severe, paralyze them.

While this sounds terrifying, be aware that many babies “outgrow” Erb’s palsy. If your baby is not one of these lucky ones, however, (s)he faces one or more eventual surgeries to prevent or minimize the risk of lasting problems with his or her arms and shoulders.

Risk factors

Your baby’s risk of Erb’s palsy increases under the following conditions:

  • If (s)he is unusually large at the time of birth
  • If you are a relatively small woman
  • If the doctor must use low or mid-level forceps to deliver him or her
  • If the doctor must use vacuum extraction to deliver him or her
  • If (s)he delivers during your second stage of labor
  • If one or more of his or her siblings is or was an Erb’s palsy victim

Early life treatment

If your new baby has Erb’s palsy, his or her doctors likely will not recommend immediate surgery. Remember, some babies “outgrow” this condition. The doctors consequently will likely recommend physical therapy throughout your baby’s first year of life to give him or her a chance to recover on his or her own.

For more information, please visit this page on our website. 

No Comments

Leave a comment
Comment Information

How Can We Help You?

Bold labels are required.

Contact Information
disclaimer.

The use of the Internet or this form for communication with the firm or any individual member of the firm does not establish an attorney-client relationship. Confidential or time-sensitive information should not be sent through this form.

close

Privacy Policy

Office Locations

Upper Marlboro Office
14513 Main Street
Upper Marlboro, MD 20772

Toll Free: 877-727-5388
Phone: 301-358-5997
Fax: 301-952-9117
Upper Marlboro Law Office Map

College Park Office
7309 Baltimore Avenue
Suite 115
College Park, MD 20740

Phone: 301-952-8205
Map & Directions

Prince Frederick Office
85 Sherry Lane
Prince Frederick, MD 20678

Phone: 410-535-5333
Map & Directions

Leonardtown Office
22835 Washington Street
Leonardtown, MD 20650

Phone: 301-475-3232
Map & Directions

Waldorf Office
3165 Crain Highway
Waldorf, MD 20603

Phone: 301-843-4004
Waldorf Law Office Map

Annapolis Office
8 Loudon Lane
Annapolis, MD 21401

Phone: 410-263-0606
Map & Directions

Review Us