Posted by: Arthur | 2008/10/22

Muscle pain after broken collar bone

12 weeks ago, I broke my collar bone. Right through the 6 weeks in the sling, I had back muscle pain, and since, have had that and upper arm pain. Lifting the arm from rest at my side is quite painful. It is worst after the arm has been inactive for more than about 30 minutes and I have to take pain killers some nights in able to sleep. I have managed to get about 75% (more on a warm day) usage, with some difficulty. I am 58 and have always recovered quite quickly from injury.

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Our expert says:
Expert ImageShoulder Doc

Dear arthur, the pain after a collar bone fracture usually settles quite fast and it does sound as if the time after you sustained the fracture is too long to still experience severe pain.

At this time of 12 weeks you should have had an X-ray at least to check if the fracture has healed. The most common reason for continuing pain in the clavicle after fracures is non-union ,i.e. the fracture has not grown together. With the complaint of arm and back pain you should also be checked for the possibility of the fracture fragments irritating the nerves of your brachial plexus


Dr Joe de Beer

The information provided does not constitute a diagnosis of your condition. You should consult a medical practitioner or other appropriate health care professional for a physical exmanication, diagnosis and formal advice. Health24 and the expert accept no responsibility or liability for any damage or personal harm you may suffer resulting from making use of this content.

Our users say:
Posted by: jasmine | 2009/02/05

I broke my collarbone when i was born and it' s definetely healed by now. i still have horrible pain in my right shoulder thats been there for about 5 years. it feels like a knot but massaging it makes it hurt even more and when i' m in one position for too long its horrible pain. my right shoulder is also noticably shorter than the left one. whats wrong with me!?

Reply to jasmine
Posted by: mvanwyk | 2009/02/04


I broke my left collarbone almost 2 weeks ago, i' m wearing a sling that has 2 belts and the both connect from the elbow, the one belt is over the lower back and around my waist and connects to the front next to the hand.

The other belt is over my left shoulder blade and over my neck over my right shoulder.

My questions.

should you move your arm / shoulder at all, because i am, im not to sure how to keep it completly still this is almost impossible?

The belt that is over the left shoulder blade cause so much mussel pain / discomfort am i wearing this sling the correct way?

Reply to mvanwyk
Posted by: Arthur | 2008/10/25

Dear Joe
The bone has definitely healed where it was broken, which was about 2 inches in from the shoulder.
The pain is in the back muscles around the shoulder blade and the upper arm, especially when I have rested a while. It is painful, at first, to lift the arm, and when I lift it above shoulder level, it " clicks"  as though something is out of place. The pain diminishes with use and warmth, but never completely disappears. I manage to do most tasks, but with discomfort.
Who do I see - a physiotherapist or ?

Reply to Arthur

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