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Brachial Plexus Surgery

What is Brachial Plexus Surgery?

Brachial plexus surgery is a medical procedure to treat injuries and trauma associated with the brachial plexus. The brachial plexus comprises a network of nerves that conveys movement and sensory signals from the spinal cord to the shoulder, arm and hands. Brachial plexus injury occurs when the nerves get stretched, compressed or in most cases torn apart from the spinal cord.

While some brachial plexus injuries heal on their own, pain and discomfort associated with severe traumas can only be treated with surgical procedures. Contact us to book an appointment with some of the best neurosurgeons for effective brachial plexus injury treatment in Kolkata.


What are the Different Types of Brachial Plexus Surgeries?

The goal of the brachial plexus treatment is to relieve pain and restore sensations and mobility. Depending on the type, location, extent of nerve injury, medical health of the patient, etc. the doctor may recommend different types of surgeries. Brachial plexus surgery types include the following - 

  • Brachial Plexus Nerve Repair
  • Brachial Plexus Decompression and Neurolysis
  • Nerve Grafting Surgery
  • Brachial Plexus Nerve Transfer Surgery
  • Tendon Transfer Surgery
  • Functional Muscle Transplant

When to See a Doctor for Brachial Plexus Surgery?

Get in touch with the neurologist in case you experience the following symptoms - 

  • Recurrent burners and stingers
  • Weakness in the hand or arm
  • Neck pain
  • Symptoms in both arms
  • Weakness or inability to use certain muscles in the hand, arm or shoulder
  • Complete lack of movement and feeling in the arm, including the shoulder and hand
  • Severe pain

How To Prepare For Brachial Plexus Surgery?

Before the brachial plexus surgery, the doctor will examine the extent of the injury and determine the location of the affected nerves. The doctor also analyses your history of medical conditions and asks about the degree of symptoms. Additionally, there may be several diagnostic tests which can confirm the need for surgery. 

The surgeon will provide a set of pre-surgery tips to guide you before the brachial plexus procedure and prevent any complications. Here are some pre-surgery instructions which can help you prepare for surgery for brachial plexus injury and ensure a smooth surgery experience -

  • Discuss your history of chronic medical condition(s) and surgical procedures with the doctor
  • Stop smoking and consuming alcohol a week before the surgery as they can increase the recovery time
  • Inform your doctor in case you have a history of bleeding disorders
  • Wear loose-fitting and comfortable clothes which do not put pressure on the surgical site
  • Do not eat or drink 10 hours prior to the surgery. It is generally recommended to not take any meal post-midnight. 
  • Inform your doctor of any ongoing medications and history of an allergic reaction to anesthesia to avoid complications during the procedure 
  • Take antibiotics or prescribed medications prior to the surgery as directed by the doctor

What Happens During The Brachial Plexus Procedure?

Since the brachial plexus procedure is a major surgery, most patients are given general anaesthesia before the surgery. After the patient is sedated, the surgeon pinpoints the issue to resolve the symptoms. Depending on what the surgeon observes during the procedure, the nerves from the scarred tissues are either removed or replaced from other parts of the body. 

If the nerve root is torn from the spinal cord, the surgeon chooses a less important but functional nerve and connects it to the significant non-functional nerve. This provides a bridge for new nerve growth. Subsequently, the procedure can also be performed with muscles or tendons.

Recovering After Brachial Plexus Surgery:

After the procedure, the patient is taken to the recovery room where the doctor monitors the progress. Generally, the recovery process after brachial plexus surgery involves the healing of the tissues that were operated on and the recovery of lost function. While tissues may heal faster after the procedure, overall recovery may take months depending on the type of procedure and the degree of injury. 

The doctor may suggest using a sling or splint after the surgery to keep the affected organ in the appropriate position for faster healing. During this time, the doctor may also recommend physical therapy. Physical therapy is critical to help you recover after brachial plexus surgery. However, the duration and type of therapy depend on the surgical procedure for brachial plexus surgery.

Why Choose CMRI for Brachial Plexus Surgery in Kolkata?

The Calcutta Medical Research Institute (CMRI) is one of the largest multispecialty hospitals in Kolkata. Our hospital is equipped with state-of-the-art technology which has revolutionized the healthcare industry for the best surgical outcomes. 

In addition, our hospital has several eminent physicians, surgeons and healthcare providers of national and international repute for comprehensive and personalised treatment. CMRI provides patient-centric care and empathy from internationally trained nurses to ensure holistic care for patients seeking effective brachial plexus injury treatment. Here are a few advantages of choosing CMRI for your brachial plexus surgery - 

  • Highly qualified and experienced neurosurgeons
  • 440-bed capacity along with cutting-edge technology and the latest medical equipment
  • Hygienic and patient-friendly infrastructure
  • Screening and diagnosis
  • Transparent Pricing Structure for cost-effective treatment
  • Patient-centric high-quality care for a high success rate
  • Pain management and palliative care
  • Complete and coordinated care for patients with all types of cancers.


What kind of doctor treats brachial plexus injury?

Neurologists specialise in diagnosing and treating disorders related to the brain and spinal cord. Therefore, in case of brachial plexus injury, get in touch with us to book an appointment with some of the best neurosurgeons in Kolkata for effective brachial plexus surgery.

What is the surgical time of Brachial Plexus Surgery?

Surgical time for brachial plexus surgery is usually 3 to 12 hours depending on the severity of the condition and the surgical expertise of the surgeon.

How long will I be in the hospital after brachial plexus surgery?

Most patients are discharged the following day after the surgery. However, in severe cases, the procedure may be done on an outpatient basis where the patient can go home on the same day after the procedure. It is only after the doctor does not suspect any complications after the surgery, the patient is allowed to go home. 

What is the recovery time after the Brachial Plexus Surgery?

Brachial plexus surgery recovery time usually varies depending on the type of procedure and the severity of the condition. For nerve transfers below the elbow, a splint may be required for two weeks. However, full recovery may take a few months. During this time it is recommended you follow post-surgery instructions, lifestyle changes, and dietary restrictions to ensure no complications. 

Will I need physical therapy after the surgery?

Yes, most patients require physical therapy after the surgery for a few months. Several physical therapies such as pool therapy (also known as aquatic therapy or water therapy) are particularly important.

Is the Brachial Plexus Surgery painful?

Brachial plexus surgery is not a painful procedure since the patient is given general anaesthesia. The patient is in sedated state and does not feel any pain. However, there may be slight discomfort and pain after the procedure as the effect of anesthesia wears off. 

Are there any possible complications of prolonged brachial plexus injury?

Brachial plexus surgery involves a rare risk of complications which include the following - 

  • Stiff joints
  • Prolonged Pain
  • Numbness
  • Muscle Atrophy
  • Permanent disability

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