2015 saw a rise in auto accidents over the last few years. Even with the advent of front and side airbags, seatbelts, and high tech crumple zone technology, well over 30,000 people die on our roadways every year. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, 2.3 million people were injured in 2013 due to auto wrecks. These injuries sometimes include months of recovery and tens or even hundreds of thousands of dollars in medical bills, not to mention lost wages from time off work. One all too common injury following an auto crash is damage to the bone, tendons, or soft tissue of the shoulder.
What Is Shoulder Impingement?
When the shoulder suffers trauma from a direct impact or from being manipulated into a position that it should not naturally move into, injury can occur to the ligaments or the surrounding tissue and bone. Shoulder impingement syndrome from a car accident occurs during such trauma and is the result of the rotator cuff tendon being pinched. During an injury, the space narrows between the rotator cuff and the acromion (the bone on top of your shoulder), according to American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons. When this space gets too narrow, and the rotator cuff tendon rubs or is pinched between the rotator cuff bone and acromion, mild to intense pain is the result. Often, the only solution is shoulder decompression surgery.
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Medical Options are Available Following Shoulder Impingement in Georgia
Your doctor may explore the option of non-surgical treatment first. This treatment may involve rehabilitation, cortisone injections, physical therapy, and over the counter non steroidal anti-inflammatories. This may only work for minor cases of shoulder impingement, and if you have been involved in a serious car accident, you may need to go the surgical route.
Arthroscopic Surgery for Shoulder Impingement
85 percent of patients who do shoulder decompression surgery have improved range of motion and decreased pain, according to the Cleveland Clinic. The most up to date and common type of surgery is arthroscopic shoulder decompression surgery. It involves just a five millimeter incision into the shoulder, and is favorable to open surgery. Following the initial incision, your surgeon will examine the tendons, bone, and muscle for damage or loose fragments that need to be removed or fixed. Spurs and uneven surfaces within the rotator cuff that cause the tendon to catch will be smoothed out. The recovery process following arthroscopic surgery takes much less time than open surgery and often ends in greater range of motion and less pain than the non surgical methods. Recovery may involve a splint or sling, depending on your personal case. Painkillers and anti inflammatories will likely be prescribed. Most people are able to return to work and other normal activities in the period of one week to three months. It generally takes four to six weeks for strength to return. Physical therapy is recommended for most patients to fully regain their range of motion and strength.
The Law Offices of Roger Ghai are Here to Help
If you have had to undergo shoulder decompression surgery from a car accident that was no fault of your own, give the the Law Offices of Roger Ghai, P.C. a call today at 770-792-1000 to discuss your legal options. You may be entitled to damages to help pay for your medical bills, pain and suffering, and lost wages.