alexa Radial Nerve Palsy after Humeral Fracture: To Explore or Not to Explore? - A Case Report
ISSN: 2329-9096

International Journal of Physical Medicine & Rehabilitation
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Case Report

Radial Nerve Palsy after Humeral Fracture: To Explore or Not to Explore? - A Case Report

Ana Costa Pinheiro*

Unidade Local de Saúde do Alto Minho, Viana Castelo, Portugal

*Corresponding Author:
Ana Costa Pinheiro
Unidade Local de Saúde do Alto Minho
Viana Castelo, Portugal
Tel: 914335860
E-mail: [email protected]

Received Date: December 04, 2015 Accepted Date: February 03, 2016 Published Date: February 05, 2016

Citation: Pinheiro AC (2016) Radial Nerve Palsy after Humeral Fracture: To Explore or Not to Explore? - A Case Report. Int J Phys Med Rehabil 4:326. doi: 10.4172/2329-9096.1000326

Copyright: © 2016 Pinheiro AC. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.



The incidence of radial nerve injuries varies from 2-17% and humeral fracture is the most common cause in young adults. The treatment of radial nerve damage, especially in cases of fracture, remains a challenge. The authors report a case of radial nerve palsy related to humeral shaft fracture and shall revise the literature about their treatment. Whether fracture or associated radial nerve injury, were treated conservatively, and the patient referred, of course, to Physiatry, to start intensive functional recovery of the affected upper limb. At 5-6 months after fracture, patient maintains radial sensory and motor deficits, and it was proposed surgical exploration of the radial nerve, which was scheduled, because a week before the alleged scheduled surgery, he demonstrated a recovery, and has fully function of the radial nerve after 2 weeks. Humeral shaft fractures are treated mostly conservatively, the radial nerve usually suffers neuropraxia and their function returns spontaneously after fracture healing, as happened in this case. The nerve exploration is reserved for cases in which there is no recovery of nerve function 3-4 months or a little more, after the fracture consolidation. Thus, nerve routine operation would subject many patients to unnecessary complications of surgery.


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