It seemed inevitable from the moment you bought your motorcycle. You hit a pothole, went over the handlebars, and rolled onto the pavement. The minute you hit, you knew something in your chest had snapped—and the emergency room doctor confirmed that you had broken your collarbone. It might be weeks before the pain subsides, but you’re more worried about the healing process. Will you eventually be able to pick up your children, lift weights, or even perform your old job duties?
What to Expect When a Broken Collarbone Is Healing
To understand the side effects and complications of a broken collarbone, patients should understand how the specifics of your injury and your treatment affect your recovery. After your motorcycle accident, you should be treated for a broken clavicle as soon as possible. In most cases, patients will suffer extreme pain and tenderness at the site of the break. An X-ray will confirm that the collarbone has been broken.
A typical road to recovery after a collarbone fracture may include:
- Surgery. While many clavicle fractures heal without surgery, some victims will need to have the bones set and pinned to help them heal properly.
- Sling. In order to help the collarbone heal properly, patients will have the affected arm restrained in a sling. This will also help reduce the pain in your chest and shoulder.
- Rehabilitation. Your doctor may recommend some exercises and arm movements to help rebuild the lost strength in your arm. You may still need to wear your sling, but you may wear it for shorter periods.
- Return to work. Patients who are returning to work after fracturing their collarbones should ease back into their regular work duties, such as avoiding lifting anything over five pounds and taking frequent rest breaks.
Symptoms That Your Collarbone May Not Be Healing Properly
Many patients will heal within a matter of weeks with few complications; however, some victims will experience potentially life-threatening side effects. You should call your doctor immediately if you show any of the following symptoms:
- The affected arm goes numb. If your arm loses feeling or you begin to have a “pins and needles” tingling in your arm, the breakage could have affected blood flow to your arm or caused nerve damage.
- Your pain persists. If your pain continues and does not get better over several weeks, consult your doctor. You may need to have additional X-rays or diagnostic testing to see if something is preventing the wound from healing properly.
- You cannot move your fingers. If your fingers begin to swell, become too stiff to move, or turn pale, blue, or black, go to the emergency room immediately and tell the nurse you recently broke your collarbone.
As broken collarbones can cause circulation problems in the fingers, you should avoid wearing rings on your fingers for at least a month after your accident.
Let Our Attorneys Help You Through This Healing Process
If your broken collarbone was caused by the negligence of another driver, we want to help you. You may be entitled to compensation for your medical bills and the time you miss from work. Let motorcycle accident attorney James Roswold make sure that you're able to heal as quickly and safely as you can. Contact our office today by completing the form on this page to learn more about whether a lawyer can help in your situation.