Broken collarbone and associated shoulder trauma

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Broken collarbone and associated shoulder trauma

Postby moreegolfer » Tue Jun 29, 2010 7:37 pm

As the title says I bit the dust Thursday week ago riding with a group early in the morning. When I parted company with my bike in the crash I made contact with the bitumen on my right shoulder and consequently broke my clavicle reasonably close to my neck. The pain is subsiding but my wife tells me I am doing too much with the arm and is concerned it won't heal correctly. I have pain in my shoulder joint and muscle spasms in my shoulder blade and neck which is undiagnosed at the moment. I am booked into my physio next Tuesday but wished to find out from others who have had this injury of their particular experiences. Anything they would have done differently or recommend to assist with healing.
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by BNA » Tue Jun 29, 2010 10:21 pm

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Re: Broken collarbone and associated shoulder trauma

Postby scotto » Tue Jun 29, 2010 10:21 pm

fractured clavicle = sling for 6 weeksif its a stable fracture or a pin/plate fixation No across body movements especially, as these will increase the pressureon the fractured bone. enjoy the tour de france, thats all the cycling you can do for a month i'm afraid, basedon what youve written

good luck
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Re: Broken collarbone and associated shoulder trauma

Postby hannos » Wed Jun 30, 2010 9:02 am

You broke your collarbone and haven't seena doctor yet?


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Re: Broken collarbone and associated shoulder trauma

Postby Redbull » Wed Jun 30, 2010 11:00 am

Howdy moreegolf

I went over the bars on Sunday and dislocated the clavicle from the shoulder joint RHS

its perfectly fine - unless i move it :shock:

Sucks to type with the left hand only.

Doc said that there is nothing much i can do - sling for about 3 weeks, pain killers and anti-inflammatories.

I look forward to hearing your progress.
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Re: Broken collarbone and associated shoulder trauma

Postby rustychisel » Wed Jun 30, 2010 11:13 am

moreegolfer, you should have it medically assessed. Most collar bone fractures are fairly simple, but if the displacement is great then it likely needs setting and pinning. Otherwise, as said, it's immobilised in a sling. Time off the bike is commonly 6 ~ 7 and sometimes 8 weeks. When I broke mine I didn't feel like getting back on the bike before 7 weeks, so in a sense I 'knew' when the time was right. If you also damage the ligaments and musculature (common enough with impact injuries) that needs to be factored in, usually by assessing range of movement, grip strength etc. When I chipped (big chip on the shoulder :roll: ) my humurus it was much more painful, very badly bruised, and I couldn't raise my arm more than 45º for 5 weeks, back on the bike after 7.

Good luck. One more thing. If you try and do too much too soon you can set back recuperation significantly and, more importantly, run the risk of injuring yourself again, perhaps worse.
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Re: Broken collarbone and associated shoulder trauma

Postby malnar » Thu Jul 01, 2010 2:56 pm

I broke my left collarbone playing footy when I was about 15 nearly 30 years ago. Wore a sling for lots of weeks. I remember having troble sleeping. It was winter so mum knitted me a cardigan in roughly the school jumper colour. Taunt magnet I was.

Almost 12 months ago I got knocked off my bike by a driver who was apparently too busy to look properly at a give way sign. Broke my left scapula (shoulder blade) & got a broken rib too. I had an ultrasound & CT scan to check the condition of the ligaments and muscles supporting the shoulder (collectively known as the rotator cuff, iicr). Luckily in my case, this was not too bad so no surgery needed. 5 weeks of taking things easy and suddenly there was no more pain when moving about or sneezing (this was probably when the bones fused).

Don't catch a cold or sniff pepper. Sneezing was terrible (though from memory it was more the broken rib that grabbed when sneezing).

Good luck with it.
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Re: Broken collarbone and associated shoulder trauma

Postby Cinder » Thu Jul 01, 2010 6:11 pm

I did my left clavicle a few years back. Mine was a gooden and involved a couple of pieces of metal to hold it together.

Anyway.

I assume you have had the break diagnosed, but not the tingling?

If you've not had the break diagnosed then you really need to go see someone ASAP.

Assuming the break has been diagnosed, I'd be going back to see the doc and making sure nothing else is being impacted upon in there. I'm not a doctor, but often tingling can be associated with things that shouldn't be left to their own devices.
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Re: Broken collarbone and associated shoulder trauma

Postby KenGS » Thu Jul 01, 2010 9:25 pm

I'm just getting over a broken right clavicle. 6 weeks in the sling and now I have a frozen shoulder so lots of painful physio to loosen it up. Good idea to see your physio early to try and avoid a frozen shoulder.
It takes 12 weeks for the bone to reach full strength - after that it is t no more risk of breaking than before it broke. I'm back on the bike after 9 weeks but taking it easy till 12 weeks is up.
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Re: Broken collarbone and associated shoulder trauma

Postby moreegolfer » Fri Jul 02, 2010 9:54 pm

I got an xray at emergency the morning of the accident and a doctor looked at my xrays and gave me the option to see an orthopod to get it plated but didn't think it needed it as the bones were close together. Given I live a long way from any sort of real specialist it wasn't a real option for me. The doctor I saw was the only available one, not my usual doc. I made an appointment with my doctor the next day and couldn't get in for three weeks ... gotta love country medical services :evil: . That appointment is next Thursday and I will keep it just to find out how it is healing. I see the Physio on Tuesday and I am concerned the shoulder has curled in and the muscles around my shoulder balde ache a fair bit.
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Re: Broken collarbone and associated shoulder trauma

Postby elantra » Fri Jul 02, 2010 11:44 pm

moreegolfer wrote:I got an xray at emergency the morning of the accident and a doctor looked at my xrays and gave me the option to see an orthopod to get it plated but didn't think it needed it as the bones were close together. Given I live a long way from any sort of real specialist it wasn't a real option for me. The doctor I saw was the only available one, not my usual doc. I made an appointment with my doctor the next day and couldn't get in for three weeks ... gotta love country medical services :evil: . That appointment is next Thursday and I will keep it just to find out how it is healing. I see the Physio on Tuesday and I am concerned the shoulder has curled in and the muscles around my shoulder balde ache a fair bit.


(Shakes head in disbelief)...did you tell the receptionist that you needed follow up for a recent fracture ?

Even a desperately busy medical practice should have capacity to see "more urgent" cases within 3 days.
That is quite fundamental to responsible medical practice.
Maybe the receptionist was in a bad mood that day.
Due to complex reasons doctors can be in short supply in rural areas but sometimes you need to stand your ground and demand to be seen.
A pill prescription or a plantar wart can wait 3 weeks but an acute injury should get seen a lot quicker than that.
Oh and by the way it will heal up OK almost gauranteed but that is not the point, what if it was more serious injury ?
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Re: Broken collarbone and associated shoulder trauma

Postby flammer » Sat Jul 03, 2010 10:01 am

This nonsense about not being able to get an appointment for three weeks! :x

Either you or someone close to you needs to be assertive. Tell them what you NEED!

I frequently see our medial system bagged in this forum for no other reason than it's busy and less urgent cases are put on hold. That will happen in any part of life if you act like a wimp! TELL THEM WHAT YOU'RE THINKING! Don't wonder off meekly.

Why is is that we defer to certain professions without reason or thought? :?
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Re: Broken collarbone and associated shoulder trauma

Postby moreegolfer » Sun Jul 04, 2010 7:34 pm

flammer wrote:This nonsense about not being able to get an appointment for three weeks! :x

Either you or someone close to you needs to be assertive. Tell them what you NEED!

I frequently see our medial system bagged in this forum for no other reason than it's busy and less urgent cases are put on hold. That will happen in any part of life if you act like a wimp! TELL THEM WHAT YOU'RE THINKING! Don't wonder off meekly.

Why is is that we defer to certain professions without reason or thought? :?

I got an appointment the morning of the accident, it was with a doctor if have never seen as my normal doctor is so hard to get into. I value my doctor's opinion very highly, he delivered our second child and my wife teaches two of his children piano. You are right though the medical choices in the bush are quite often limited to the latest locum or newby doctor to town, not the one you choose to see.
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Re: Broken collarbone and associated shoulder trauma

Postby jules21 » Mon Jul 05, 2010 10:39 am

flammer wrote:I frequently see our medial system bagged in this forum for no other reason than it's busy and less urgent cases are put on hold. That will happen in any part of life if you act like a wimp! TELL THEM WHAT YOU'RE THINKING! Don't wonder off meekly.

Why is is that we defer to certain professions without reason or thought? :?

that's a double edged sword. emergency rooms are full of ham actors rolling around on the floor to try and jump the queue. i have trouble joining in with that.

i put a nail into my leg a couple of years ago and tried to get a doctor's appt at the local bulk billing clinic, which was filled with the usual lonely pensioners. no luck. i could have made a scene but i found a better place that didn't bulk bill and offered decent service. maybe i'm not pushy enough, but it worked out for the best i think.
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Re: Broken collarbone and associated shoulder trauma

Postby moreegolfer » Wed Jul 07, 2010 10:20 am

I saw the physio yesterday and she was surprised at the range of movement in my shoulder for less than 3 weeks from the accident. She stressed that I put no load on the collarbone and if using the arm to think about engaging the scapular muscles first to protect the collarbone from any sort of shear force. I will heed her advice and keep away from risky activities to ensure I get a good union. I checked the calendar and 6 weeks will be around my birthday so I can celebrate the day with my first ride :D .
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Re: Broken collarbone and associated shoulder trauma

Postby Jim455388 » Wed Jul 07, 2010 11:16 am

Hi 7 weeks since a grade 3 dislocated AC Joint from a fall when the front wheel disappeared from under me. Whilst this is not a break of the bone they tell me ligaments don’t really heal you just have to strengthen the muscles around to compensate. Constant pain almost subsided. I have done 2 rides on the bike in the last fortnight. The first 28km with most of the time avoiding using that arm much. Last weekend I did a 65km ride. Yes that pushed it a bit. I felt it that night but next day it was fine. I have been going to Physio weekly although only started real range of movement strategies at week 4. I have also been doing some structured rehab at the gym. I still can’t lie/sleep on it. At this stage I would agree with the 12 week suggested timeline for return to normal.
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Re: Broken collarbone and associated shoulder trauma

Postby moreegolfer » Thu Jul 08, 2010 4:55 pm

Saw my usual doc at lunch and he had a look and was happy with healing but said you can do what you want but just don't fall over :wink: . I am trying to track down a trainer so I can ride without risking damaging the healing process if I fall off.
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Re: Broken collarbone and associated shoulder trauma

Postby trailgumby » Thu Jul 08, 2010 11:23 pm

My local bulk billing factory has a notice that says to let the receptionist know if you're bleeding or have broken bones, and you usyally get whisked straight through.
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Re: Broken collarbone and associated shoulder trauma

Postby jules21 » Sat Jul 10, 2010 3:58 pm

Jim455388 wrote:Whilst this is not a break of the bone they tell me ligaments don’t really heal you just have to strengthen the muscles around to compensate.. At this stage I would agree with the 12 week suggested timeline for return to normal.

if the ligaments have been damaged, which is a distinct possibility, then no amount of muscle strengthening will compensate for that. i went through 3 dislocations before eventually having reconstructive surgery and i have nothing but disdain for the advice of physios who continually insisted that everything would be OK if i did the rehab. they aren't orthopaedic surgeons and just exist in a state of denial that there is treatment beyond what they are licensed to provide. if your shoulder doesn't improve and if you haven't already, go and speak to an orthopeadic surgeon.
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Re: Broken collarbone and associated shoulder trauma

Postby scotto » Tue Jul 13, 2010 9:46 am

i went through 3 dislocations before eventually having reconstructive surgery and i have nothing but disdain for the advice of physios who continually insisted that everything would be OK if i did the rehab. they aren't orthopaedic surgeons and just exist in a state of denial that there is treatment beyond what they are licensed to provide. if your shoulder doesn't improve and if you haven't already, go and speak to an orthopeadic surgeon.


as a sports physio, i would agree. shoulder injuries are not difficult to diagnose in the rooms, and are easily confirmed by further investigations. i often see patients who have had physio elsewhere for months, only to see them for 30minutes and have to write a letter to a specialist to refer them on.
as a physio who does some work for a leading shoulder specialist, it can be frightening to see what some of my colleagues pass off as treatment. it can also be frightening to see what some surgeons pass off as surgery. having said that, in this day and age, its not the norm to leave clavicle fractures to heal without some kind of fixation, unless youre a little old lady who isnt going to do much to their shoulder for 8 weeks....unfortunately, medical experience is inversely related to distance from capital city cbd's.
( gee this went off topic a bit - sorry !)
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Re: Broken collarbone and associated shoulder trauma

Postby moreegolfer » Wed Jul 14, 2010 10:30 pm

I got back on the bike on Saturday and Sunday, just a leisurely 15km each day to see how much fitness I have left. I wasn't too bad, averaging 32 clicks, on flat ground mind you and a bit of gusty wind. I tried the magnetic trainer this evening and given it is the first time I have tried one it went ok. This one clamps onto the rim, it's a little old but will do the job until I right to ride early in the mornings with the usual crew in two weeks time. I have a referral for an xray prior to recommencing dangerous activities to ensure the knit is good.
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Re: Broken collarbone and associated shoulder trauma

Postby trailgumby » Wed Jul 14, 2010 11:20 pm

Agree with Jules and scotto. Respect given to medical professionals needs to be earned.
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Re: Broken collarbone and associated shoulder trauma

Postby Safire10 » Sun Jul 25, 2010 1:40 pm

Can anyone give me advice on what their experience was in removing or keeping a plate following a broken collar bone.

I broke my collar bone and immediately had a plate put in. 3 weeks post-op, I somehow managed to break the titanium plate - and no I did not over-do it, I followed drs orders! A new, bigger and stronger plate was put in. I'm just wondering now if I should keep the plate in or not once it heals. In addition to the initial fracture, I've got 3 new holes in my bone from the 1st plate's screws. I've heard mixed reviews in regards to pain and risk of refracture with and without the plate, so I'm totally confused.
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Re: Broken collarbone and associated shoulder trauma

Postby Cinder » Sun Jul 25, 2010 2:08 pm

Can't talk about plates, my break was only fixed with screws which I had removed and didn't have any issues at all really.

I think you need to have a proper chat with the surgeon if possible, and failing that, get some advice on what to do (or at least who to ask) from you GP.
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Re: Broken collarbone and associated shoulder trauma

Postby zues » Fri Jul 30, 2010 8:45 pm

Jules21 wrote"
if the ligaments have been damaged, which is a distinct possibility, then no amount of muscle strengthening will compensate for that. i went through 3 dislocations before eventually having reconstructive surgery and i have nothing but disdain for the advice of physios who continually insisted that everything would be OK if i did the rehab. they aren't orthopaedic surgeons and just exist in a state of denial that there is treatment beyond what they are licensed to provide. if your shoulder doesn't improve and if you haven't already, go and speak to an orthopeadic surgeon.

I also had a grade 3 AC joint dislocation 15months ago. I was advised by the surgeon not to do anything but I still get pain in my shoulder and right side after doing anything strenuous like chopping wood or lifting over my head.
The surgeon said he could cut off the end of the clavicle -drill a hole in it and tie it down but said it might not be successful and I may still experience pain.
Jules 21 were you happy with your surgery :?:
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Re: Broken collarbone and associated shoulder trauma

Postby jules21 » Sat Jul 31, 2010 11:36 am

before the surgery, if i raised my arm above my head the shoulder joint felt very unstable - for good reason. if it feels like it's going to dislocate, i'd suggest it probably is.

i'm not qualified to second guess the surgeon, but in my experience, they tend to be conservative about recommending surgery (which, if you think about it, is probably a good thing - but that's another matter). in my case, the surgery was a huge success - i have full (or 95%) function again.
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