Shoulder Injuries In Car Accidents, Their Symptoms And Treatments

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Car accidents are dangerous and depending on your speed at the time of collision you could incur severe injuries. These injuries can be of many kinds from as small as bruises to as big as brain and spinal cord injuries. However, one of the most common types of injuries that result from car crashes and collision is shoulder injury.

Fractures and dislocations of shoulder and the bones around them are very common even when the accidents are not that severe in nature. You should have enough information about shoulder traumas so you can act quickly if you or someone you love has a shoulder injury due to car accident.

Shoulder injuries can be of many types and so you need to have information about each and every type. Only after having full information will you be able to find the right medical care and on time (Learn More.) When we talk about fractures, we are referring to bones that have been broken, or even slightly cracked as a result of the motor vehicle accident.

As a result of the accident you could have fractures in shoulder blade (scapula), upper arm bone’s top (proximal humerus) and collar bone (clavicle). If the bones have not broken but they are not aligning at the joint, it is referred to as dislocation.

There are soft tissue injuries as well that occur when your muscles, tendons and ligaments are affected as a result of the accident. Since there are different types of fractures, the symptoms for them are different too. In most of the fracture cases you will not be able to move your arm and shoulder. You will also notice swelling in the area where you are feeling the pain. If the bone is really fractured, you might also feel the sensation of grinding when you try to move your arm and shoulder in any direction.

X-rays are enough in most cases to find out if your shoulder has fractured but there are other methods as well, such as computed tomography. Most doctors will physically examine your body and the affected region to find out what’s wrong with your shoulder. Today, we are going to talk about the different types of injuries that can take place in your shoulder region after a car accident. We will also tell you the symptoms of each type and the treatments that you should seek as soon as you have the injury:

Fractures Of The Upper Arm Bone.

As mentioned earlier, this is also known as proximate humerus fracture. In this type of fracture you will notice the following symptoms:

  • You will be hardly able to move your shoulder, if any at all.
  • You will have a lot of pain in your shoulder region.
  • You will notice swelling and change of color of the skin in the affected region.


your treatment depends on where your broken bone pieces are. If the broken fragments are still in the position where they should be, you will be able to get a treatment without requiring a surgery.

So if that’s not the case, you will have to go for surgery. Doctors will often use screws and plates to get the fragments back into their position. If the case is even more severe, the doctor will advise to have the shoulder replaced as a whole.

Fracture Of The Collar Bone

This is also called clavicle fracture. When your car accident has caused clavicle fracture, you will notice the following symptoms:

  • You will be able to move your shoulder but very little. In the case of humerus fractures you are not able to move the shoulder at all but there will be very limited movement in this particular case.
  • The end of the fractured bone might start to show underneath your skin in the form of a bump that was not there before the accident.
  • The middle part of your collar bone might get swollen with acute pain when you touch the area.


Commonly, you will not be required to go under any surgeries when you have a clavicle fracture. However, if the damage is quite severe and your fractured bone parts have pierced through your skin, which is called a compound fracture, you will have to go for a surgery.

Once again, the doctor will use screws, rods and plates to fix and get the fractured pieces of the bone in one place.

Dislocation of The Shoulder.

Dislocation of the shoulder is quite obvious from the name. If your shoulder or the shoulder of someone you love has been dislocated, following symptoms will be obvious:

  • The front part of the shoulder might start to look very prominent.
  • You will feel as if your arm is numb or dead.
  • Your arm will seem rotated a little.
  • You will have severe pain and you won’t be able to move your arm.


The first priority for doctors here is to pull the shoulder back into its place, called the socket. You will have to go to the emergency room and be treated with a sedative in order to perform the treatment without you becoming convulsive.

A special brace might be used after doing an x-ray of the area to confirm that the shoulder has gone back into its socket properly. Other treatments might also be suggested by the doctor depending on what they discover through x-rays after realigning the shoulder. Treatments can also change depending on the age of the patient.

Separation Of Shoulder.

Your shoulder can completely lose its place if the accident is severe. You will notice the following symptoms if your shoulder has separated:

    • You will have a very annoying feeling of something sticking up on the exact shoulder region.
    • The top part of your shoulder will start to look like a bump
    • You will also feel pain in the top regions of the shoulder.

Shoulder Injury Treatments:

Doctors decide the treatment of such an injury based on its severity, the age and physical aspects of the patient and the direction in which the shoulder has moved. If the injury is not severe, you could get away with it without going through surgery.

Also, severe separations will lead to surgeries and how well you will be able to perform with your arm after the surgery is often not predictable in this case.

If you or someone you love has been involved in a car accident with shoulder injuries, get the doctor’s help as soon as possible. The second most important thing for you should be to get in touch with a professional law firm that can help you pay for the huge expenses on the injury by getting compensation from the negligent party.

Ehline Law Firm is always there to help you with whatever type of road accident you have been involved in. Whether it’s a car accident or a pedestrian accident, we are here to help you with the most qualified and able lawyers in the industry.

We will appoint one of our most seasoned lawyers to your case so you can receive compensation for not only your medical expenses but also the loss of quality of life, loss of income, mental agony and physical pain that you had to go through due to the negligence of the offending party.