Radiation-Induced Brachial Plexopathy (RIBP) is a progressive and painful paralysis of the arm and shoulder, brought on by radiation treatment for breast cancer and certain other cancers. With improvements in radiation technology, RIBP is rare these days, but can still occur when multiple overlapping radiation fields or high radiation doses are used. It most often involves lymphedema of the affected arm and, like lymphedema, RIBP can develop at any time following radiation treatment of the area. There is no cure, though interventions are possible to slow progression, optimize remaining arm and hand function, control related lymphedema, and relieve pain.
RIBP survivors are often left unable to use their dominant hand for normal function. Recently, Step-Up/Speak Out reviewed Handwriting For Heroes in the context of RIBP. Step-Up/Speak Out’s Director Bonnie Pike wrote: “We are very impressed with Handwriting For Heroes.”