There are many different ways you can get injured even while engaging in normal daily activities, but one of the most common reasons for visits to emergency rooms is trip and fall injuries.
Overview of Trip and Fall Injuries
Though this term is used liberally, a trip and fall accident occurs when a person is taken off their feet by an object that was left in an area that is supposed to be clear. Trip and fall injuries frequently occur in places such as:
- Department stores;
- Sports venues;
- Movie theatres; and
- Outdoor walkways and sidewalks.
Private businesses and public buildings are required to keep their hallways, stairwells, lobbies, and other public areas clear of any extraneous objects. But there are other factors which can lead to trip and fall accidents even in clear passageways. These include:
- Poor lighting;
- A lack of handrails;
- Torn carpeting;
- Slick or wet floor surfaces; and
- Broken concrete or tile.
Rotator Cuff Injury
When a person trips, they may try to use their arms to either grab onto a railing or brace their fall. This often results in an unusually large strain being put on one or both arms. Whenever this occurs, it is not uncommon for victims to suffer a rotator cuff injury in their shoulder.
Your shoulder‘s tendons and muscles make up your rotator cuff, which functions as a connector between your upper arm and shoulder blade. Because of the complex structure of these muscles and tendons, your rotator cuff is able to provide your shoulder with more range of motion than any other joint in your body.
When any of the tendons or muscles in your shoulder are torn or strained, the result is a rotator cuff injury. The most obvious symptom of this injury is pain, which is often noticed or aggravated when you:
- Reach upward or over your head;
- Carry a heavy object;
- Lie down on the injured shoulder; and/or
- Brush your hair, dress, tie your shoes, or perform similar everyday activities.
Other symptoms of a rotator cuff injury are weakness or loss of range of motion in your shoulder, as well as the desire to keep your shoulder still at all times.Treating Rotator Cuff InjuriesIf you suspect that you may have mildly injured your rotator cuff, there are several steps you can take to try to speed the healing process along.
- Rest the shoulder. Try to avoid using the shoulder as much as possible for a week or so.
- Stretch it gently. Your physician can recommend certain stretching exercises to keep your shoulder active. You don’t want to completely immobilize your shoulder, because you risk stiff joints in the injured area and other aches and pains elsewhere caused by overcompensating for your rotator cuff injury.
- Alternate ice and heat. For the first two days after sustaining the injury, apply an ice pack to the affected area several times a day. Once the swelling has subsided, rub heating ointment or place a heating pad on your shoulder as needed. Both ice and heat treatments should last about 20 minutes each.
- Take pain medication. Over-the-counter products containing ibuprofen, aspirin, or naproxen may help reduce the pain and inflammation of the area.
This is general advice pertaining to mild rotator cuff injuries. Always get a professional medical opinion from your doctor before self-treating any injury, especially a rotator cuff injury.
Medical Treatment for Rotator Cuff Injuries
If your rotator cuff injury is more serious, you’ll need medical intervention. Some of the treatment options your physician may recommend include:
- Physical therapy;
- Steroid injections; and
If your rotator cuff injury was caused by a trip and fall accident due to someone else’s negligence, you should consult a Chicago trip and fall attorney to learn more about your legal options and how to recover compensation for your medical bills and other accident-related expenses.
Hiring a Chicago Trip and Fall Attorney
With serious medical issues such as trip and fall injuries, it’s always best to consult a medical professional to help with diagnosis and treatment. During this time, recovering from your injuries should be your main focus, not dealing with insurance adjusters and escalating medical bills. Retaining the legal services of a Chicago trip and fall attorney can help you focus on getting better while your attorney deals with the insurance companies on your behalf.
The Chicago trip and fall attorneys at the Law Offices of Barry G. Doyle, P.C. will help you monitor your medical expenses and work toward a settlement to cover all of the treatments you need to get your life back on track. Contact us today for a free case evaluation – 312-263-1080.