Erb’s palsy, also known as brachial palsy, is a condition that most-commonly occurs to newborn children when their brachial plexus nerves are damaged during labor or delivery. When these nerves (which are located near the shoulder) are injured, it can cause weakness and limited mobility in the arm and hand. This paresis is usually temporary as long as it’s immediately identified and treated, but some cases do lead to permanent disability.
Erb’s palsy is almost always the direct result of shoulder dystocia, and takes place when a newborn suffers from a difficult birth in which his or her arm is treated with excessive force.
While some birth injuries are merely accidents that could not have been prevented, many cases of Erb’s palsy could have (and should have) been prevented, if not for the negligence or carelessness of a hospital, doctor, nurse, or other medical professional.