Pathophysiology of peripheral nerve injury: a brief review

Neurosurg Focus. 2004 May 15;16(5):E1. doi: 10.3171/foc.2004.16.5.2.


Clinicians caring for patients with brachial plexus and other nerve injuries must possess a clear understanding of the peripheral nervous system's response to trauma. In this article, the authors briefly review peripheral nerve injury (PNI) types, discuss the common injury classification schemes, and describe the dynamic processes of degeneration and reinnervation that characterize the PNI response.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Axons / pathology
  • Humans
  • Ischemia / physiopathology
  • Nerve Compression Syndromes / physiopathology
  • Nerve Growth Factors / physiology
  • Nerve Regeneration
  • Peripheral Nerve Injuries*
  • Peripheral Nerves / blood supply
  • Peripheral Nerves / physiopathology
  • Schwann Cells / physiology
  • Stress, Mechanical
  • Wallerian Degeneration
  • Wounds and Injuries / classification


  • Nerve Growth Factors