Anatomy Atlas – Part 24 – Nerves

Nerves. There are so many things that get on mine. Coleagues. Family. Too many people. Absence of people. Loud noises. Quite noises. Silence.

I do occasionaly wonder how the phrase “It is getting on my nerves” came about, but I never bothered to look.

©Charly, all rights reserved. Click for full size.

What you see here is in no way detailed depiction of peripheral nerves, only a rough outline of some main plexuses. What is ingenuous about nerves is the way they are led though holes and around various joints in a way to avoid pinching, squeezing or bending at a sharp angle. Everyone who has ever hit their elbow in between the protrusions on ulna where the nervus ulnaris leads knows what irritated never means – pain. Lots of it. This brings a memory of Caine, and not a happy one at that. She had an inflammation of nervus ischidadicus and if you ever have difficulty to imagine how that feels like, hit yourself in the elbow and multiply the sensation by about four times and prolong it indefinitely. I have already mentioned when talking about the pelvis that this pain can be so extreme as to lead someone to suicide.

But on a cheerier note, plexus brachialis is a cluster of nerves near surface around the musculus trapezius. That is where you have to squeeze in order to apply the vulcan nerve pinch to render your foes unconscious.

Of course vulcan nerve pinch does not work for non-vulcans, but should you ever find yourself in a self-defense situation, knowing where nerves lead near surface is indeed useful, since irritating nerves elicits involuntary reactions in even the strongest individuals. If you ever find yourself in a situation like that, my recommendation is to use thus gained fraction of a second to get the hell away.


  1. Ice Swimmer says

    One thing that I remember from the bioelectronics course I attended one summer that the nerve cell membranes have to endure rather high electric fields and the capacitance of the nerve cell is rather big as the membranes are so thin that the −70 mV voltage of the action potential is quite a lot.

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