I feel you on that brachial plexus. I had a fractured clavicle that I didn't get fixed. My shoulder got dislocated at the same time (diving for a fly ball in center field in high school). It was my last game, as we were eliminated in the state semis. It hurt like a mother for months, but I never got it fixed.
It ended up compressing my brachial plexus, and I developed "thoracic outlet syndrome", which is what ended Sandy Koufax career (it wasn't diagnosed then... they just called it "dead arm", but that's exactly what I got). My left arm went completely dead. I suffered muscle wasting, and couldn't even grasp a glass. My head wouldn't even turn. This dragged on for 2.5 years in college. Doctors didn't know what was up. My arm was just numb, and the pain was shooting up into my neck and down my chest and through my shoulder. One doctor said I was faking a neck disc herniation and looking for drugs. I asked him how many pills I'd taken for it. He said, "Well, according to your chart... none. So why are you looking for pills?" I said, "I'm not looking for pills. I'm looking for a cure. I can't use my left arm dude." He goes, "I think it's all in your head." I said, "Then fix my head smart guy." He got super pissed and walked out of the office. Then he stormed back in like five minutes later and had me do "Adson's sign" and it verified TOS because my hand went completely numb. He still thought I was looking for pills. I said I didn't want any. He was baffled.
I went to a neurosurgeon. He had me get a angiogram to see if blood flow was compromised and if I had formed any clots below or above my clavicle. I had... so he sent me to surgery right away. He said all of my nerve endings were damaged, so he scraped them, and he left my clavicle alone as it had healed strong. Instead he just removed my first rib in small sections (first rib resection) all the way from my sternum around to my spine in the back.
I woke up and I was in a mother load of pain. It was horrendous, but my arm was WARM and I could feel it for the first time in 2.5 years. The nerve pain persisted, and he said, "Give it a year for those nerves to heal." A year to the day I felt this loud POP and my arm felt fine. I started playing softball again the next day and regained 95% of the muscle that had wasted. It was a miracle. They thought my arm would stay skinny forever, but I worked like a crazy man.
That brachial plexus pain is horrendous, because it feels like this gnawing, burning, aching, awful pain. You can't do ANYTHING about it. Like when my leg was broken I'd elevate it and ice it and it would feel better. When I had a tooth ache I could put some of that lidocaine stuff on. When I busted up my neck they put it in a brace and locked my head down and the pain stopped and then they fused it and no more pain. But the brachial plexus was like a tooth ache times ten and just constant right down where you're trying to get breath down. I ended up getting pneumonia a few times too because I wasn't breathing deeply enough.
I had totally forgotten about that one with everything else that happened.
Let this be a cautionary tale... don't let your kids play sports when they are young unless they have a sit-down talk with me and I explain to them that they'll feel like death warmed over when they are 39 unless they take it a bit easy. Don't play every inning, every down, or every quarter like you're Lenny Dykstra or Ken Easley. It catches up to you, especially if you aren't some physical specimen and are just some 190 lb. 6'1" white dude from Federal Way. Haha.
It's good to vent this stuff out. I feel better already just knowing all of you guys have suffered too. Keep the stories coming. Luckily I've told my worst ones briefly. Well, except for the broken spine on a waterslide accident on my ninth birthday, and the blown out knee when I was 13 on a crackback block. Other than that... things have been ok. Oh, and all of the broken fingers. But those are lightweight stuff.