Our Experienced Personal Injury Attorneys Explain Some Of The Basic Things You Need To Know If You Injured Your Shoulder In An Accident
Shoulder injuries are common in many different types of accidents, including car accidents and premises liability accidents. Most accident related shoulder injuries involve damage to the ligaments, tendons, muscles or cartilage of the shoulder. Bone fractures, while possible, occur less frequently. If you injured your shoulder, here are some basic things you should know.
The Anatomy of a Healthy Shoulder
The shoulder is one of the most complex joints in the human body. The shoulder is composed of the humerus: the upper arm bone, the clavicle: the collarbone, and the scapula: the shoulder blade. Two bony projections, the coracoid process and the acromion, help the shoulder to function as a joint. The rotator cuff attaches the humerus to the scapula along tendons and muscles. The rotator cuff is also responsible for the arm’s ability to rotate, adding stability to the joint as a whole. The labrum, or cartilage cuff, helps keep the humerus in place. The shoulder joint also contains bursae, small fluid filled sacs, which reduce friction and contribute to the ease of movement of the joint. The movement of the shoulder is relatively unrestricted, which makes it a versatile, but more prone to injury.
Common Shoulder Injuries Caused by Accidents
Some of the most common accident related injuries to the shoulder include rotator cuff and labral tears as well as damage to the acromioclavicular joint. The rotator cuff can be injured in a car accident if the shoulder is heavily impacted in a collision. Symptoms of a torn rotator cuff include swelling, a limited range of movement, and popping sounds with a feeling of weakness or instability when attempting movement. This type of shoulder damage is commonly caused by trauma. Although labral tears can gradually happen due to aging, they are commonly caused by falls on snow and ice and car accidents, especially in pedestrian knockdown type cases. The symptoms of injury to the labrum are similar to those of rotator cuff damage and are also treated with surgery when physical therapy and pain medication are not sufficient.
Acromioclavicular joint injuries or AC injuries, the location where the outer clavicle meets the acromion, are also frequently caused by car and fall accidents. This type of damage may take the form of a strain, tear or fracture, depending on the severity and location. Strains and tears affect the ligaments surrounding the joint and can lead to the separation of bones in extreme cases. Other possible injuries to the shoulder include bone dislocation and impairment of nerves in the region.
Treatment For Your Shoulder Injury
Treatment of shoulder injuries generally follow a similar course. Initially, you may be treated with ice, anti-inflammatory medication and physical therapy. At times, however, surgery is required to repair the damage.
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If you have any questions about your shoulder injury that was caused by an accident, contact our experienced accident attorneys for more information by calling (800) 762-9300. You can also get started by simply filling out one of our case intake forms, and we will have one of our attorneys get right back to you.
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