Nerve Injuries

When a nerve is injured, sometimes you are not be able to move the concerned muscle at all. Nerve injuries can take very long to cure and in the worst case the affected muscle or muscle group can stay paralyzed forever.

Description: Nerve Injuries

  • Before we start talking about nerve injuries, you have to know what nerves are what they are for: Nerves transport information from or to the brain. (similar to the cables from your computer to the printer and to the scanner) Just like a cable, a nerve has a protection (A ring of tissue) There are motor nerves and Sensory nerves.
    While motor nerves tell your muscles what to do (how to contract etc), sensory nerves send back information like pain, pressure, temperature etc. Motor nerves and sensory nerves are close together inside the same ring of tissue. Just like in the computer - printer example... Computer says print this picture - Printer says: Sorry no paper...
  • What happens when a nerve is injured:
    Just like very thin wires, nerves are kinda fragile. Nerves can be damaged by, overstretching, pulls, cutting, etc. A nerve can be cut with its tissue (insulation) or without its tissue (insulation). Of course in both cases information cannot be carried from or to the brain, but its much worse if a nerve is broken apart and the nerves insulation (tissue) is a broken apart too. When nerve fibers are cut, the furthest point of the nerve dies (furthest point from the brain and closest to the muscle). But the the closest end to the brain never dies and after a while, the nerve fibers start growing along the insulation. Unfortunately the nerve fibers grow very slow (about one cm per month) and the further the nerve injury is from the brain, the longer it takes to heal. (Leg nerve injuries take much longer to heal than shoulder nerve injuries) If the tissue (insulation) is broken apart too, and the nerve fibers start growing along the tissue, the nerve fiber might grow into a ball where the nerve insulation ends. This is very painful and is called neuroma.
  • Nerve injury treatment:
    If the nerves cover of tissue is not cut, the only thing you have to do is wait, wait and wait. Feelings might come back after month or years. In the meantime you should not force around the concerned are too much, to keep your joints healthy. In some cases other muscles take over a certain muscles function and the muscle with the injured nerve kinda disappears. (Regardingless if the nerve will be reactivated or not after a while) If the insulation is cut too, a doctor will have to uncover the whole nerve, to sew the ends of the nerves insulation together. If there is a dirty wound where the nerve is cut, the doctor will have to wait until the skin, etc is healed and then he will open up to sew the nerves cover together. And now to the worst case: If the ends of the nerve-cover are too far apart when they wanna sew them together, (For example after a open wound healed out), they will have to take a piece of nerve tissue from somewhere else to use the cover. Of course they will use a sensory nerve only and you will just lose the feeling where they take away the nerve, and not motory nerve functions. While a nerve is not functional, the you have to to therapy, to keep the joint flexible. If a joint is not moved for several moth it becomes stiff and if its forced around too hard with the help of other muscles, this may lead to a permanent joint wear out or injury.
    Electric muscle stimulation therapies can be used to keep the muscles from degenerating too much. But please don't try do a EMS-theraphy on your own. You can harm your joints trying to put your muscles under electricity. Even after the nerves functions come back, your brain has to learn to control the coming and outgoing information again.