Being involved in a car accident may sometimes result in a broken clavicle, more commonly referred to as a collarbone. Despite the name, the collarbone is not actually located in the neck. Rather, it consists of the two long, thin bones that connect your breastbone to your shoulder blades. Breaking this bone can create any of the following symptoms:
- Pain and swelling
- A grinding feeling when raising the arm
- Shoulder sagging
- Difficulty moving the arm and shoulder
- The formation of a bump around the area that was broken
To diagnose a broken clavicle, your doctor will need to complete an x-ray. While a broken clavicle will often heal on its own, you might need to use a splint or brace to keep your shoulder from moving while it heals. You may also need to take anti-inflammatory painkillers to help reduce the pain and swelling. In addition, range-of-motion and strengthening exercises may be necessary to help you regain full function of your arm and shoulder.
For most people, it takes six to twelve weeks for a broken clavicle to heal. Once you are able to move your arm and shoulder without pain, you can resume some level of physical activity and therapy. It is important that you do not take on too much too soon, however, as it is possible that you could break the bone again.
If you have suffered a broken clavicle from a car accident or other type of accident, contact Advanced Spine & Rehab today! We will be happy to help you work toward achieving recovering from your accident.