One of the most common types of shoulder injuries experienced by victims of Dallas-Fort Worth auto accidents is a broken clavicle (collarbone). A fractured clavicle can be very painful and may often require corrective surgery which will put your arm and shoulder out of commission for several months.
If you or someone you love has suffered a broken collarbone or other serious shoulder injury as the result of a car, truck or motorcycle accident where someone else was at fault, it is a good idea to consult with an experienced car accident attorney.
The clavicle (collarbone) is located between the sternum (ribcage) and the scapula (shoulder blade). Its function is to connect the arm to the rest of the body. Since any painful injuries are often initially masked by the adrenaline experienced by auto wreck victims, it may be several hours before symptoms of a fractured clavicle present themselves.
Be on the lookout for shoulder pain, bruising or swelling in the area, inability to lift the arm because of pain, a grinding sensation if you attempt to lift your arm, sagging shoulder, or a deformity or “bump” in the area.
If you believe that you have experienced a broken collarbone, it is important that you go to see a doctor as soon as possible. This ensures you can begin treatment before your injury worsens, and also allows the medical records to clearly attribute your injuries to your recent accident – this is important when it comes to making a claim against the at-fault driver’s insurance company.
In order to determine the severity and other specifics of your shoulder injury, an X-ray and possibly also CT or CAT scans will be necessary.
Will I Need Surgery?
Although surgery is commonly used to treat clavicle fractures, it is not always necessary in 100 percent of cases. Regardless, you will need pain medications and a sling or other arm support throughout the duration of the healing process, which can often take several months. Towards the end of the healing process, you will be able to begin gentle shoulder and elbow exercises under doctor’s supervision. Once the fracture has healed completely, your doctor will tell you it is okay to begin more strenuous exercises and return to regular activities.
If surgery is required, this will usually involve inserting plates, pins, rods, screws, and other prosthetics beneath the skin to either repair the broken bone or else replace it entirely.
It is important to note that even if your doctor believes that surgery is not necessary initially, complications may arise during the course of natural healing which cause the fracture to move out of place. If this occurs, surgery may become necessary.
Another potential complication of a clavicle fracture is that nerves and blood vessels beneath the collarbone could be injured when the broken bone shifts.
Call Us Today For a Free Consultation
If your injuries were the result of a car, truck or motorcycle wreck where someone else was at fault, you may be entitled to recover compensation to cover the cost of your medical bills and other expenses (or lost income) related to your injuries.
Contact the Anderson Law Firm today for a free, no obligation consultation on your case. Call us toll free from anywhere at 800-354-6275 or locally in Dallas-Fort Worth at 817-294-1900.
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