|Year : 1994 | Volume
| Issue : 2 | Page : 97-98
Axillary nerve palsy following herpes zoster
Rishi Bhargava, US Agarwal, Raj Narayan
Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None
Herpes zoster causing axillary nerve palsy is quite rare. We are reporting a case of paresis of Deltoid muscle on the left side following Herpes zoster.
Keywords: Herpes Zoster, Deltoid Muscle, Paresis
|How to cite this article:|
Bhargava R, Agarwal U S, Narayan R. Axillary nerve palsy following herpes zoster. Indian J Dermatol Venereol Leprol 1994;60:97-8
|How to cite this URL:|
Bhargava R, Agarwal U S, Narayan R. Axillary nerve palsy following herpes zoster. Indian J Dermatol Venereol Leprol [serial online] 1994 [cited 2020 Jul 4];60:97-8. Available from: http://www.ijdvl.com/text.asp?1994/60/2/97/4005
| Introduction|| |
Herpes Zoster (HZ) caused by varicellazoster virus is subsequent to reactivation of latent infection in sensory ganglion and the virus lodges into sensory ganglion via continuous exteroceptive nerves or by haematogenous route during chicken pox irfection.  On reactivation it traverses through sensory nerve roots and produces clinical picture. Infection is usually limited to sensory ganglion and nerve roots but it may occasionally involve motor system leading to paresis of muscles supplied by the affected nerve segment. 
Axillary nerve is formed by posterior cord of branchial plexus (C S ,C 6 ) and supplies the deltoid muscle. Isolated axillary nerve involvement leading to paralysis of deltoid muscle is rare.
| Case Report|| |
A 52-year-old man developed pain and multiple grouped vesiculobullous eruption on erythematous base over the outer aspect of left arm and forearm [Figure - 1]. Next morning he noticed inability to abduct his left arm. On examination of the left arm, upto first 15° of shoulder abduction could be carried out by the patient but not beyond it [Figure - 2]. Flexion and extension of arm and forearm, rotatory movement of shoulder were normal. Cutaneous sensory loss was present on lower half of the deltoid muscle. Systemic examination was normal. Patient was treated symptomatically for HZ. After the initial increase in the lesion, they gradually subsided in next 7-10 days. The lesions completely healed in 2 weeks. However, function of the deltoid muscle did not show any improvement.
After 3 months of follow up dropping and flattening of shoulder, reduction of the deltoid muscle mass and prominent acromion process were observed. There was no improvement in abduction of shoulder.
| Comments|| |
Herpes zoster usually occurs in thoracic 53%, cervical (C 2 , C 3 , C 1 ) 20%, opthalmic division of trigeminal nerve 15% and lumbosacral 11% dermatomes of body.  Moschella  found most common involvement of C 2 & L 2 dermatomes. Motor system may be affected in the form of paresis of muscles. Pathy  had described 14 cases of herpes zoster leading to flaccid paralysis of limb muscles. Eban  described a case of deltoid muscle paresis after cervical herpes zoster and subsequent painful shoulder with marked subluxation of head of humerus. The present case had complete paralysis of isolated deltoid muscle with dropping and flattening of shoulder after 3 months of follow up, probably due to disuse atrophy. The cause of muscle paresis in herpes zoster is not clear. Two possible factors may be contributory (i) gangliomuscular disease subsequent to infection of propioceptive ganglion cells or (ii) myositis.' Schmidbauer sub have demonstrated varice1la zoster virus in myositic masseter muscle of trigeminal herpes zoster. But myositis, even if it occurs with herpes zoster, causes muscle paralysis, is not clear.
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[Figure - 1], [Figure - 2]