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blog home Personal Injury Why your shoulder pain may be a torn rotator cuff

Why your shoulder pain may be a torn rotator cuff

By John Singleton on September 20, 2021

Rotator cuff tears are common injuries in car accidents. If you have been involved in a collision and are experiencing pain in your shoulder, it is important to see a doctor as soon as possible.

The sooner a rotator cuff tear is diagnosed and treated, the sooner you can begin to heal. If left untreated, this type of injury can worsen over time, and you may be left with permanent damage to your shoulder.

What is a rotator cuff tear?

The rotator cuff is a group of four tendons that hold the upper arm bone in the shoulder socket and allow it to rotate. Trauma in a motor vehicle accident can cause these tendons to tear, either partially (partial-thickness tear) or all the way through or away from the bone (full-thickness tear). A rotator cuff tear may heal in time with rest and medications for milder injuries, or it may require steroid injections and/or surgery for more severe tears.

What are the symptoms of a rotator cuff tear?

With a torn rotator cuff, you could be experiencing a range of symptoms, which may include:

  • Pain in the upper arm
  • Pain in the shoulder with lifting or movement at or above shoulder level
  • Difficulty lifting, lowering, or rotating the arm
  • Cracking and popping sensations in the shoulder
  • Weakness in the shoulder and arm
  • Difficulty sleeping

How do rotator cuffs get torn in car accidents?

Nearly any traffic crash can cause a rotator cuff tear. This type of injury is common among drivers who have their hands braced on the steering wheel when a collision occurs. The force of impact shoves the upper arm into the shoulder, causing stress on the rotator cuff tendons. Rotator cuff tears are a common injury in auto accidents because the shoulders tighten and absorb the impact of the crash on the body. This can cause the rotator cuff to tear.

How are rotator cuff tears diagnosed?

Initially, the doctor will perform a physical exam of the shoulder, including range of motion testing. If you have symptoms that may indicate a rotator cuff tear, your doctor will likely order imaging, such as X-ray, ultrasound, CT-scan, or MRI. Diagnostics are important, not only for your treatment and recovery, but for your personal injury case as well.

How do you recover compensation for a torn rotator cuff?

If you have suffered a torn rotator cuff in a crash that was someone else’s fault, the first step toward recovering compensation is to speak with an experienced Virginia personal injury lawyer. It is important to get medical attention as soon as possible to document your injuries. Do not sign any statements, releases, waivers, or settlements without first consulting with an attorney. Our Virginia personal injury lawyers can help ensure your medical bills are being paid and assess what your case is worth. We can negotiate skillfully with insurance companies on your behalf for full and fair compensation. If necessary, we can bring an action against the at-fault party in civil court.

Why choose us?

At GibsonSingleton Virginia Injury Attorneys, we know firsthand what it’s like to be injury victims. We have personally experienced the frustrations our clients face. We do everything possible to make the legal process easy for you, so you can focus on your recovery. Our Virginia personal injury lawyers work on contingency fee basis, which means you pay us no fees until we recover compensation for you. If you have suffered a rotator cuff tear in an accident caused by someone else’s negligence, call us today at (804) 413-6777 to find out how we can help.

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