Shoulder Injuries : Auto Injury

Intense physical forces can be transmitted through the shoulder complex during an auto crash. The following information details how those injuries occur, common areas of the shoulder that are injured, and therapy that can be done to get your shoulder back. If you've been in a crash, contact our Chiropractic Clinic in SE Portland today to see how we can help.

Part 1 - Shoulder Anatomy Lesson: Simplified
There are 3 major bones that form the shoulder complex with the ribs forming another part (not illustrated). The view from behind is:

Shoulder Anatomy image - labelled bones

Added to those bones are 4 major muscles.  3 of them attach to the back of the scapula and connect to the head of the humerus (image below).

Posterior view of the shoulder muscles forming the rotator cuff

The 4th muscle (not illustrated), subscapularis, attaches to the front of the scapula, and also connects to the humeral head. These 4 muscles (supraspinatus, infraspinatus, teres minor, subscapularis) form a structure around the top of the humerus (upper arm bone) known as the "rotator cuff." They are often referred to as SITS, an acronym to help remember their names.

There are, of course, other players in the shoulder complex, including but not limited to:
biceps (brachii)deltoidrhomboid major
rhomboid minortrapeziusteres major
serratus anteriorlevator scapulacoracobrachialis
pec majorpec minor

In future posts, shoulder injuries common in automobile collisions will be discussed, with treatment options.

Rotator cuff injuries
Labrum injuries
Sprains and strains of the shoulder complex.
Shoulder impingement.
AC joint separation (acromioclavicular joint).
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