Common shoulder injuries sustained in car accidents

On Behalf of | Nov 2, 2023 | Motor Vehicle Accidents |

Car accidents are an unfortunately regular occurrence on West Virginia roads. It’s normal for some involved in one to think they escaped physically unscathed; however, some injuries don’t manifest until days later. These are some of the common shoulder injuries after a crash.

Torn rotator cuff

A torn rotator cuff is one of the most common shoulder injuries sustained in motor vehicle accidents. It occurs upon high impact, causing the tendon to tear from the bone in the upper arm and shoulder region. A rotator cuff tear is painful and can either be partial or full. If you suffer from this injury, you may notice you have trouble lifting objects or sleeping on the affected shoulder.

Sprains and strains

When a collision occurs, it’s normal for the vehicle’s occupants to brace themselves for the impact. This can cause the muscles, ligaments and tendons in the shoulder to be stretched beyond their normal range of motion, leading to a sprain or strain. Although there are varying levels of sprains, even a minor injury can cause pain and limited range of motion.


A dislocated shoulder is a common injury stemming from car accidents. It happens when the bone is pushed out of its normal position. People who sustain this injury need a doctor to push the bone back into place again; never have anyone do it for you unless they are a doctor themselves or they could worsen your injury.


Shoulder fractures cause pain, swelling, tenderness and limited range of motion. Depending on the severity of the impact, the fracture can either be simple, with the bone broken but left in place, or compound, which pushes bone out of place and sometimes pierces the skin.

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