Clavicle Fractures

Clavicle fracture or a broken collarbone

The following links provide useful information for those unfortunates who happen to fractured a clavicle or in laymans terms, break a collarbone, Broken collarbone information

From a fellow sufferer by John Yardley

There are many different forms of collarbone fracture but generally those who break this bone know straightaway. 

INDICATIONS ARE,

  • A sensation of the two broken ends crunching together (Crepitus  evident with gentle manipulation and carried out only by a medical practitioner).
  • The shoulder may droop forward or appear shortened relative to the other side.
  • Instinctive cradling of the injured arm.
  • Tenderness and swelling, ecchymosis, may be visible over the fractured area. 
  • Abrasion over the collarbone suggests the fracture was from a direct blow.
  • Blanching of the skin at the fracture site may indicate an impending open fracture (gap between the two broken ends).
  • Decreased pulses may indicate a Subclavian artery injury.
  • Venous stasis, discoloration and swelling indicate a subclavian venous injury.
  • Difficulty breathing on the affected side may indicate a pulmonary injury, such as a pneumothorax (punctured lung).
  • Palpation of the scapula and ribs may reveal a concomitant injury (smashed collarbone).

A thorough upper extremity examination is necessary and special attention should be paid to the neurovascular status, Brachial Plexus (five nerves that run below the collarbone - SEE VIDEO BELOW FOR MORE INFO. 

  • Pins & needles sensation in arms and hands may indicate the broken bone is pressing down on the Axillary nerve.