> Collarbone Fracture
What is the Collarbone?
The collarbone, or clavicle,
runs from the middle of the chest to the shoulder. It
connects the shoulder blade and shoulder to the front
Active people may fracture the clavicle or injure the
joints on either end of the clavicle. One of those joints
is the sternoclavicular joint, on the chest side, and
the other is the acromioclavicular (AC) joint, on the
shoulder end. An injury to the AC joint is commonly
referred to as a shoulder separation.
Shoulder injuries happen in two ways:
- Caused by a strong, dislocating blow, such as going
over the handlebars of your bike and landing on your
- Caused by falling on an outstretched hand or by a
weak blow to the outside of the shoulder, which pushes
the shoulder into the chest and compresses your collarbone.
The vast majority of clavicle fractures
heal with non-operative treatment consisting of a figure-8
splint around the shoulders and an arm sling. Fractures
frequently heal with some angulation that may leave
a residual "bump" at the fracture site, but
shoud\lder function is normal and there are no limitations
Pain and deformity at the site of
the collarbone fracture establishes the diagnosis. The
brachial plexus is a group of nervers that course under
your collarbone on the way to your arm. Your doctor
will examine your neurologic status to ensure that there
is no associated nerve injury. X-rays of the collarbone
confirm this diagnosis.