Fractured Humerus in Car Accident: Types of Breaks and Effects on Claim

Fractures are common in Denver car accidents. While these may not be life-threatening injuries in most cases, they can still cause a great deal of discomfort, lead to substantial medical bills, and may impact one’s ability to work. All of this is important to consider when an accident is another driver’s fault.

Types of Fractures of the Humerus

The humerus is the upper arm bone. It’s a very strong bone, so when it’s been broken in a traffic accident it’s often the result of a very serious accident, such as a high-speed collision on the I-70 in Denver.

There are three types of fractures that typically occur:

  • promixal humerus fracture – the break occurs close to the shoulder joint and oftentimes the rotator cuff is also damaged;
  • distal humerus fracture – close to or at the elbow, which often requires surgery; and
  • diaphyseal humerus fracture – mid-shaft breaks that typically don’t necessitate surgery.

Signs and Treatment of a Fractured Humerus

As with most fractures, common signs of an upper arm fracture include:

  • pain;
  • bruising;
  • stiffness; and
  • swelling.

The type of fracture usually determines the course of treatment. The arm may be placed in a splint and immobilized during healing and recovery. Medication can help with discomfort and pain.

Although fractures that occur close to or at the elbow (distal humerus fracture) generally require surgery, surgery could also be necessary in other types of breaks; for instance, when the bone fragments are significantly out of place.

One of the problems with a fractured humerus is that it can impact the hand. Although the break is in the upper arm, the radial nerve can also be damaged in the accident.

This nerve goes down to the hand, so there may be numbness and weakness in both the hand and wrist. In this case, not only does the person have to recover from the fracture but from nerve damage as well. Depending on the nature of the injury and extent of damage, recovery could take anywhere from a few weeks to a few months.

How a Fractured Humerus May Impact a Car Accident Claim

Establishing fault is important if one hopes to seek compensation for damages sustained in a car accident.

Examples of negligence can include:

  • traffic violations (such as speeding or running a red light);
  • distracted driving (texting or talking on a cell phone);
  • impairment (drugs or alcohol); and
  • recklessness (racing or road rage).

In addition to showing fault, claimants or plaintiffs must also prove the injuries sustained in the accident and their effects. Medical records, such as an x-ray of the humerus, can show the fracture. If there is nerve damage, a doctor can make note of this. All effects of an injury should be considered, current and future.

The injured person may be compensated for the medical bills incurred and for time missed from work, which could be several weeks or more. Additionally, there may be other types of damages that claimants can recover such as mental anguish, pain and suffering and other losses, depending on the claim details.

To get a more specific idea of the damages recoverable in a claim or lawsuit after a fractured arm, talk to attorney D.J. Banovitz. He helps Denver accident victims pursue fair compensation for their injuries, so call today: (303) 300-5060.

D.J. Banovitz’ career has always concentrated on trial practice and he has litigated hundreds of cases. His passion and sole career focus has been to seek justice for people suffering from personal injuries as the result of someone else’s negligence. The hallmark of the Law Office of D.J. Banovitz, is the total commitment to professionalism, quality, and personalized care of your injury case. D.J. has dedicated his professional life to helping those most in need and is a proud and active member of the Colorado Trial Lawyers Association. His experience includes volunteering for Colorado Rural Legal Services in Montrose, the Colorado Aids Project, consumer law, family law, criminal defense, and Alternative Defense Counsel for juveniles in Denver.