Recovering from broken collarbone...

Discussion in 'Health Nutrition and Supplements' started by Mppsu2003, Jun 11, 2019.

  1. Mppsu2003

    Mppsu2003 New Member

    Jun 11, 2019
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    Hi all,
    I broke my left collarbone in a crash two days
    ago...have to wait another 3 days to see an ortho. The
    ER said I had closed displaced fracture, but they
    seemed to think I wouldn't need surgery, that there
    were no deformities or anything. I was discharged with
    a sling and some basic instructions.
    l'm curious what the recovery was like? Right now it
    hurts but that's obvious. Here are some questions
    have if anyone can help since i'm stressed out while I
    wait to talk to a doc:
    1) It says 6-8 weeks to heal ...does that mean fully
    healed, like I can go about my normal physical activity?
    Or is that just for the bone itself to "fuse" back
    2) Is surgery common for displaced fractures? The ER
    didn't seem to think it was severe enough, but you read
    a lot of different things
    3) About how many days should I expect before I can
    move the arm a little at all..IE when it gets easier to put
    a shirt on, which right now is difficult
    4) Can I worsen the fracture by moving my arm? 1
    haven't taken it out of the sling other than to shower so
    I'm doing the best I can, but the arm still moves here
    and there (typing, just natural turns)...the pain isn't any
    different during these motions
    Anyway thanks in advance for any help or experience
    you can provide.

  2. dabac

    dabac Well-Known Member

    Sep 16, 2003
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    That's mainly for the actual bone to fuse. Full recovery usually takes longer. Rehab, mobility exercises, strength etc.

    There's a HUGE variability in that. I have one friend who looks like he has a half a golf ball stuck under his skin from a dispaced fracture decades ago that the docs didn't think was worth operating on.
    He still can't carry a backpack b/c of that. I have another friend who is an amateur racer. He's so far down the rankings that he'll never make the headlines, but he's racer enough to have an extended athletic insurance policy. He got surgery and could use the arm on the injured side w/o pain for everyday stuff(eating, drinking etc) the day after surgery.

    Can't help you there, sorry. it's too long since I broke mine. Don't remember clearly.

    It's broken already, so making it broken-er is kinda difficult. But you can worsen the alignment. Or possibly break chips off the ends.
    I'd expect that to hurt considerably, and take something else than normal motions to happen.
    If you're unlucky, you can keep the fracture so "unsettled" that the ends heal over w/o joining up, forming a kind of false joint.Takes surgery to fix.
    Quite uncommon though.
  3. Chuckabutty

    Chuckabutty Active Member

    Jun 21, 2018
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    I broke my collar bone, shoulder, arm, several ribs and cracked my shins in a motorcycle crash, many years ago. (A helmet saved my life as I came down head first on the road.) It was six months before I could return to (light) work, and a full year before I was back to normal. It's one of those things with which patience is needed. I know how frustrating that is, but until science invents a pill that instantly heals broken bones, we have no other option.
  4. BrianNystrom

    BrianNystrom Active Member

    Aug 13, 2013
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    You probably hate the idea, but you're just going to have to take it easy for a few weeks. If you try to rush it, the bone won't heal properly and you'll just prolong your healing process. A good way to gauge your situation is let the pain be your guide; if it hurts, don't do it! The first 2-3 weeks are the most critical for getting the bone fusion process going. After that, you should notice a significant reduction in pain and you'll be able to put light pressure on the injured bone, which will actually help it heal at that point. You should be able to gradually increase the pressure on the arm until the 6 week point when the bone is healed. Again, if it hurts, back off. Most importantly, work with your Ortho and follow his recommendations.

    If you have an indoor trainer, you can still work your lower body to maintain your fitness, but don't put any pressure on the injured arm. Especially early on, your body needs to focus on healing your injury, so any workouts should be pretty light. You can increase the intensity as you heal.