It is possible to have a rotator cuff injury from an automobile accident. The rotator cuff is the name of the four muscles and tendons that form the shoulder joint. Basically, the rotator cuff aids the shoulder’s ability to have a wide range of motion. Interestingly, the shoulder has a very wide range of motion when compared to other joints in the body. A healthy rotator cuff is very important for allowing you to do daily routine tasks such as getting dressed.
Sometimes there is a tear in the rotator cuff when one of the four muscles and tendons are injured. Most often, rotator cuff injuries occur from repetitive use, but sometimes they can be caused by traumatic injury. Repetitive use is often associated with such activities such as overhead lifting or sports, but sometimes a forceful collision like an automobile accident can cause a rotator cuff tear.
The accident most associated with a rotator cuff tear is the classic rear end accident. Sometimes, when anticipating a rear end collision, a person looks in their rearview mirror just before impact. At that moment, they brace their hands against the steering wheel in anticipation of the impact. Unfortunately, doing so can sometimes lead to injury of the rotator cuff. This is because the shoulder is in an “unrelaxed” state when the body braces for impact, and therefore, the shoulder absorbs a large amount of force from the accident. An acute tear can occur from this type of accident.
If you feel pain in the shoulder after a car accident and have trouble sleeping, putting pressure on your shoulder, rotating your arms, or you experience a popping or clicking sound in your arm, you may have a rotator cuff tear. Your physician can diagnose one, but early diagnosis is important.
Many of my clients often overlook the possibility of rotator cuff tear because they simply don’t consider it. Make sure you mention your injury to a doctor so they can diagnose it properly. Rotator cuff tears may require surgical intervention if physical therapy and other approaches are unsuccessful.
by Robert Mansour
Robert Mansour is a personal injury lawyer serving Santa Clarita, Valencia,