Klumpke's palsy (Dejerine-Klumpke palsy) is caused by a sudden injury to the roots of C7, C8 and T1. This results in a lower motor neuron injury affecting certain muscles in the upper extremity.


Clinical features:

(1) claw hand with wasting of small muscles in the hand

(2) variable sensory loss along the ulnar distribution of the arm, forearm and hand


Additional clinical findings:

(1) Avulsion of the T1 root is accompanied by ipsilateral Horner syndrome because preganglionic sympathetic fibers are damaged as they traverse the ventral root to reach the superior cervical ganglion.


Preceding events may include:

(1) suddenly grabbing onto something while falling

(2) any injury with the arms elevated beyond 90 degrees that places sudden tension on the roots of C7, C8 and T1


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