Seatbelts can be very effective in preventing serious injuries and death in car accidents. However, there are instances in which they can cause injuries on their own. This is less likely than them saving you, and the injuries they cause are generally less than the injuries they prevent, but it is still important to know about potential seatbelt injuries – especially those that cause injury to the shoulder.
The Three Most Common Shoulder Injuries Caused by Seatbelts
Shoulder injuries caused by seatbelts are often the result of the pressure on the shoulder that has the seatbelt on it. It can cause three major injuries:
- AC Joint Injury
- Impingement Syndrome
- Thoracic Outlet Syndrome
Note that these are just three of the examples of shoulder injuries a seatbelt can cause. Seatbelts may also cause other injuries as well.
AC Joint Injuries
This type of shoulder injury happens when bones in the shoulder separate and as a result they damage the AC joint. This can cause several issues, including pain and a limited range of motion. The most common symptoms a person may experience with this type of injury include swelling, pain in the collarbone and/or shoulder, and pain when moving the shoulders.
This issue occurs when there is a tendon within the rotator cuff that is irritated and inflamed. As time goes on, the irritation and inflammation results in the tendon become thicker, which makes movement harder. The most common symptoms of impingement syndrome include pain on either the side or front of the shoulder.
Thoracic Outlet Syndrome
This is actually an umbrella term that covers a wide range of issues that cause pain in the neck, arm, and shoulder. The pain comes from compressed vessels. There are non-specific thoracic outlet syndrome issues that can be triggered by car accidents. This is an injury that will only get worse as the victim continues to move about and live their normal life.
Seatbelt Injuries Can Take a Long Time to Heal
Any of these seatbelt injuries can take weeks or months to truly heal. Some may require long-term physical therapy or surgery. If your injury was the result of another party acting negligently then they should be held responsible for your medical bills, lost wages, and other damages. The best way to find out if you have a case is to contact a personal injury attorney.
You can reach out to The Law Offices of Larry H. Parker at 800-333-0000 for a free legal consultation. We will carefully consider your case and help you better understand the options available to you and the likely outcome of those options. Call today and take your life back into your hands.