The rotator cuff is the collection of muscles and tendons that stabilize and facilitate movement of the shoulder joint. Any time you raise your arm or use your arm to pull or push, you activate the rotator cuff. But the rotator cuff is susceptible to injuries, especially during traumatic events like car accidents.
How can a car accident cause a rotator cuff injury?
There are several ways that car accidents can cause rotator cuff injuries. Any accident that places a significant strain on the shoulder joint can damage the rotator cuff. In a rear-end collision, for example, if the driver realizes the crash is about to occur and braces her hands on the steering wheel, her shoulders will absorb much of the force. This can cause bruising, swelling, and tears.
What are the effects of a rotator cuff injury?
Rotator cuff tears can cause severe pain as well as a reduced range of motion. Patients have difficulty moving their arm without pain and may their shoulder may even ache while sleeping. The injury can also cause tenderness and weakness in the shoulder, impeding the patient’s ability to work.
How do doctors treat rotator cuff injuries?
Treatment for a rotator cuff injury can include surgical and non-surgical methods.
- Nonsurgical, conservative treatment: Noninvasive measures include wearing a sling, resting the arm during healing, pain medication, physical therapy, and shoulder exercises.
- Surgery: If the tear is substantial or the conservative treatments prove insufficient, surgery may be necessary. This means an extended recovery, though, so doctors usually only recommend it as a last resort.
Can I recover damages for my rotator cuff injuries?
Rotator cuff injuries and resulting losses such as medical bills, lost wages, disability, and pain and suffering may be recoverable in a car accident claim or lawsuit. If you try to pursue a settlement from the other party, getting compensation will depend on proving that party was at fault for your accident.
Contact a car accident lawyer for help. With an adequate settlement, you can ensure you get the treatment you need and replace any lost wages or earning capacity related to the accident. Contact the Law Office of Julie Johnson, PLLC in Dallas at 214-290-8001 to schedule a free consultation.