Understanding a Narakas Injury in Oregon

Oregon birth injury brachial plexus injury portland birth injury lawyers

Our Oregon Narakas Injury Lawyers Explain the Seriousness of Narakas Injury


Narakas injury is a type of brachial plexus injury. The brachial plexus nerves run between the neck and shoulders and control the chest, arms, shoulders and hand muscles. A brachial plexus injury causes damage to a part of the nerve or entire nerve, leading to loss sensation, function, movement and even physical deformity. Brachial plexus injuries often occur when the newborn is inappropriately manipulated during delivery. These injuries can often be avoided with proper medical care and careful manipulation of the baby during delivery. While not all cases of Narakas injury in Oregon are due to medical malpractice, many are. This is why our Narakas injury medical malpractice lawyers encourage you to contact our office to learn what rights you have. 


Brachial Plexus Nerves Explained


The brachial plexus is a group of nerves that originate at the spinal column and run between the neck and shoulders. These nerves are located in the cervical (neck) region of the spine. There are five separate nerves included in the brachial plexus and they run from the base of the neck all the way down to the armpit. From there, they separate into different nerve branches. Each nerve involved in the brachial plexus has a different purpose and function. Therefore, one nerve can be damaged while the rest may still function properly. 


The nerves that comprise the the brachial plexus include C5, C6, C7, C8 and T1. To better understand Narakas injury, understanding how the nerves function is important. 


C5 – C5 helps to raise the arms, move the shoulders and flex the elbow. It also help s with the function of the diaphragm. 


C6 – C6 helps with movement of the should, flexion of the elbow, raising of the arm, and aids to externally rotate the arm. It aid in rotating the wrist over, and extending the elbow and wrist. 


C7 – C7 aids in flexion of the wrist and helps to rotate the wrist and extend the elbow and wrist. 


C8 – C8 allows flexion of the wrist and supplies strength, function and sensation to the small muscles in the hand.


T1 – T1 controls the muscles of the trunk (above the waist) as well as the upper rib muscles. 


Brachial Plexus Injuries Classified Under the Narakas System


The type of Narakas injury can be quite different based on location of the injury as well as the severity. A neuroma occurs when there is damage to the nerve. Usually the nerve is able to heal itself but it then can cause scar tissue, leading to possible discomfort, nerve dysfunction and pain. Neuropraxia occurs when there is damage to the myelin of the nerve. A rupture is when the nerve is damaged or torn but not separated from the spinal cord. The most damaging and catastrophic type of injury is an avulsion injury. This occurs when the nerve is completely torn from the spinal cord. 


The Narakas scale allows for proper classification of brachial plexus injuries. This guides treatment, prognosis and whether or not certain surgeries or therapies would be appropriate for this injury. 


Group 1 – Duchenne-Erb’s Palsy – This occurs when damage to C5-C6 cause loss of function, paralysis and weakness of the biceps and deltoid muscles. The wrist and fingers are typically unaffected. 


Group 2 – Intermediate Paralysis – Damage occurs from C5, C6 and C7 which results in loss of function, weakness, and even paralysis of the biceps, deltoid, fingers and wrist. While flexion of the fingers remain intact, extension is affected. 


Group 3 – Total Brachial Plexus Palsy – This occurs when damage affects all layers of the brachial plexus nerves from C5 to T1. This causes complete nerve paralysis. Therefore, there is loss of movement, strength, sensation and function. The severity of this varies based on how severe the injury is. However, typically group 3 injuries result in an almost complete paralysis. 


Group 4 – Total Brachial Plexus Palsy with Horner’s Syndrome – The same damage that occurs in group 3 occurs. However, Horner’s syndrome is also involved. Horner’s Syndrome occurs when there is damage to the nerves in the neck which affects the overall appears and function of a person’s face. People with Horner’s Syndrome typically have one sided facial drooping, a contracted pupil, drooping of the upper eyelid and the inability to sweat (on the affected side of the face). 


How Can Narakas Injury Be Caused By Medical Malpractice?


It is a physician’s responsibility to deliver the infant in a safe manner. When the baby and mother are not properly monitored, this allows for the infant to potentially get stuck in the mother’s birth canal. Additionally, improper prenatal care can be to blame when a mother who should have had a c-section from the start is not identified as needing one. Often times, Narkas injury is a result of improper manipulation of the infant during delivery. Excessive force of improper use of extraction tools often lead to brachial plexus injuries. This is why brachial plexus injuries are often due to medical malpractice as often times these instances are completely avoidable. 


How Can Our Narakas Injury Medical malpractice Lawyers Help You?


If your child suffered from a Narakas injury or other type of brachial plexus injury, we encourage you to call our office today. Our experienced Narakas injury lawyers can review your case for FREE and will inform you if you are entitled to damages. Damages are awarded when a birth injury is found to be a result of medical malpractice. Damages in Oregon are typically awarded in the form of compensation. Compensation for this type of injury typically includes:


  • Medical bills
  • Lost wages of the parent
  • Lost future wages of the parent and child (if applicable) 
  • Assistive equipment coverage
  • Pain and suffering
  • Financial therapy assistance for physical, occupational and speech therapy if needed


These are just a few indications for damages. We encourage you to call our office today to see what compensation you and your child may be eligible for.


Did a Loved One Suffer a Narakas Injury?  Call Our Law Firm for Help Today


If you or a loved one have been seriously injured or killed as a result of medical malpractice contact the Oregon Medical Malpractice Lawyers at Kuhlman Law at our number below or fill out the intake form.  We offer a free initial case evaluation and handle cases on a contingency fee which means that you pay no money unless we recover.


Our law firm handles cases throughout the state including Bend and Portland Oregon, Redmond, Central Oregon, Sisters, Madras, Multnomah County, Deschutes County, Salem, Eugene, Corvallis, Lane County, Medford, Gresham, La Grande, Albany, Medford, Beaverton, Umatilla, Pendleton,  Cottage Grove, Florence, Oregon City, Springfield, Keizer, Grants Pass, McMinnville, Tualatin, West Linn, Forest Grove, Wilsonville, Newberg, Roseburg, Lake Oswego, Klamath Falls, Happy Valley, Tigard, Ashland, Milwakie, Coos Bay, The Dalles,  St. Helens, Sherwood, Central Point, Canby, Troutdale, Hermiston, Silverton, Hood River, Newport, Prineville, Astoria, Tillamook, Lincoln City, Hillsboro, and Vancouver, Washington.


We also have an office in Minneapolis, Minnesota and take medical malpractice cases throughout the Twin Cities, including St. Paul, Hennepin County, Ramsey County, Dakota County, Washington County, Anoka County, Scott County, Blaine, Stillwater, and Saint Paul Minnesota.

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