Ultrasound imaging of brachial plexus trauma in gunshot injury

Muscle Nerve. 2019 Jun;59(6):707-711. doi: 10.1002/mus.26461. Epub 2019 Mar 19.


Introduction: Brachial plexus trauma related to gunshot (GS) injury requires early examination and characterization to ensure appropriate treatment. Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) may be contraindicated when there are metal fragments in a patient's body. Ultrasound (US) may present an alternative to imaging GS-related brachial plexus injury.

Methods: Three patients with GS-related brachial plexus injury who underwent US imaging evaluation at our institution were identified. A retrospective review of the patients' medical records was performed.

Results: US characterization of nerve abnormalities after GS injury to the brachial plexus was in agreement with electrodiagnostic and intraoperative findings.

Discussion: Information from the US reports was useful in preparation for brachial plexus reconstruction surgery. As such, US has unique utility when MRI cannot be performed. US imaging can provide useful characterization of the brachial plexus after GS injury when performed by an experienced operator. Muscle Nerve 59:707-711, 2019.

Keywords: brachial plexus injury; gunshot wound; imaging; nerve trauma; neurosonology; ultrasound.

Publication types

  • Video-Audio Media

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Brachial Plexus / diagnostic imaging*
  • Brachial Plexus / injuries
  • Brachial Plexus / physiopathology
  • Brachial Plexus / surgery
  • Brachial Plexus Neuritis / diagnostic imaging
  • Brachial Plexus Neuritis / etiology
  • Brachial Plexus Neuropathies / diagnostic imaging
  • Brachial Plexus Neuropathies / etiology
  • Electromyography
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Neuroma / diagnostic imaging
  • Neuroma / etiology
  • Neurosurgical Procedures
  • Peripheral Nerve Injuries / complications
  • Peripheral Nerve Injuries / diagnostic imaging*
  • Peripheral Nerve Injuries / physiopathology
  • Peripheral Nerve Injuries / surgery
  • Peripheral Nervous System Neoplasms / diagnostic imaging
  • Peripheral Nervous System Neoplasms / etiology
  • Plastic Surgery Procedures
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Wounds, Gunshot / complications
  • Wounds, Gunshot / diagnostic imaging*
  • Wounds, Gunshot / physiopathology
  • Wounds, Gunshot / surgery
  • Young Adult