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Broken Clavicle
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May 18, 2016
Mountain biking accident resulting in a broken clavicle. Surgery: Plate and 6-screws.

Anyone have any similar tales to tell regarding recovery time and returning to a normal life?


Joined Dec 13, 2009
5 points
May 18, 2016
Much longer than you think...raising your arm and any kind of motion will really hurt (as you know by now)...My estimate is 4-6 weeks before any real use...mine was a car crash that also busted the sternum as well..THAT takes forever john strand
From southern colo
Joined May 22, 2008
1,575 points
May 18, 2016
I'm recovering from one as well. I admittedly tend to rush these sort of things but I was back climbing within 2 weeks, albeit very easy routes. Quickly most movements will feel pretty good but you'll still run into moves that you can't do yet. I'm at 5 weeks now and I can climb at probably around 90% but any kind of mantle move or hard push on that arm still is an issue. Bouldering is still touchy as more dynamic movements and falling can be painful. Good luck. Peter Brown-Whale
From Randallstown, MD
Joined Aug 23, 2014
0 points
May 18, 2016
My wife broke her clavicle while mtn biking a few years ago. She did it exactly one month before a big multi day relay race. She ended up doing the race and was completely recovered in 6 weeks. The worst part of any injury like that will be the first 3 weeks. Do the PT, even if it is expensive it will be worth every penny. hotlum
From Bend, Oregon
Joined May 4, 2009
365 points
May 18, 2016
It took me over months to recover. I had a bone chip between the two bones which was not visible in the x-rays. The bones were too far apart to mend. Eventually I had surgery and was good to go almost immediately.

People who need to get well quickly go for the surgery immediately however it is major surgery with all the accompanying risks.

climber pat
From Las Cruces, NM
Joined Feb 5, 2006
185 points
May 18, 2016
i've had 5 broken collar bones,

they heal really quick but are easy to re-break during the healing process. probably best to wait the full 4-6 weeks.
christoph benells
From tahoma
Joined Nov 14, 2014
55 points
May 18, 2016
I'm 5 weeks into a clavicle fracture from a cycling accident. It really depends on the level of displacement. I had complete displacement of the midshaft (1 break) without necessity for surgery. I have therefore been advised to wait 3 months before resuming climbing. Surgery only shortens the healing time by at most a couple weeks, and the body does have a tendency to heal itself remarkably well.

So it depends on a number of variables (age, displacement, surgery, location). Average cases seem to be sling off at 6 weeks, conservative physical activity awhile later.
Joined Jun 1, 2015
0 points
May 18, 2016
Damn. Benells. I thought my 3 was a lot. It depends on the location and severity of the break. I did mine on bike and dirtbikes. It doesn't take much and I waited the 8-12 weeks and went out and REBROKE it very easily. It was a depressing moment so I suggest you be aware like the above said it's easy to re break it. If it's a crack or anything less than a full break with no complications it can heal in several weeks. Best to give it 8-12 or what your doctor tells you. SRB25
From Woodside, ca
Joined Nov 11, 2014
0 points
May 25, 2016
With surgery I was climbing really easy stuff 3-4 weeks post operation. Full on climbing at 6-9 weeks. Without the surgery it would have been a lot longer recovery. Ryan Lynne
Joined Sep 18, 2015
1,195 points

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