The clavicle is a long thin bone located between your ribcage and the shoulder blade.
You have one clavicle bone on each side of your neck. These are also called the collarbones.
Different kinds of injury can damage a clavicle bone, causing it to fracture into
two or more pieces. Most often, this happens along the middle of the bone. The bone
may break near where it joins the ribcage. Or it may break near where it joins the
shoulder blade. A clavicle fracture is most often caused by a direct hit to the shoulder.
This may happen during a car accident or sports injury. Falling on an outstretched
arm can also cause a clavicle fracture. Weak and brittle bones (osteoporosis) can
make a clavicle fracture more likely.
In some cases, the bone may break
but the pieces are still lined up correctly. When the pieces are not lined up correctly,
it's called a displaced fracture. This type of injury may need ORIF to repair. Without
ORIF, your broken clavicle may not heal normally. During an open reduction, the bone
pieces are lined up correctly again. The bones are then connected back in place with
hardware. This is called internal fixation. The hardware may include screws, plates,
rods, wires, or nails.
A clavicle fracture can often be
treated with pain medicine and a splint or sling. But you are more likely to need
for a clavicle fracture if:
The pieces of your broken bone are not lined up correctly
Your broken bone went through your skin
Your bone broke into several pieces