After a motor vehicle accident, arm pain can be just as debilitating as back pain, especially if you are experiencing pain in your dominant arm or hand. Arm and hand pain can take many forms. The pain can be a burning or stinging sensation, or it could be a tingling feeling, as though your arm is filled with static snow going all the way down to the fingertips. Numbness throughout the arms, hands, and fingers can also occur.
Some may wonder why on earth would your arm hurt after a motor vehicle accident? Arm and hand pain, tingling, or numbness often occurs after whiplash injury, so one study sought to understand the extent of arm and hand pain after motor vehicle accidents that caused whiplash.
Arm Pain and Anatomy
The brachial plexus (BRAY-kee-ull PLEHCK-suss) forms a network of nerves that separates from the spinal cord in your neck. These nerves then travel down mostly to the arms and hands. Motor vehicle accidents are the most common method of injury to the brachial plexus which can lead to arm pain.
One study thought to show the connection between arm and hand pain and injury to the neck following motor vehicle accidents. The Brachial Plexus Tension Test (BPTT) was developed and used to separate arm pain arising from the arm itself and arm pain the results from neck injuries. The study then used the BPTT on patients who stated they had pain, tingling, or numbness after a car crash.
Overwhelmingly, the BPTT showed that neck injuries, even if they are somewhat minor, can cause radiating arm pain. Unfortunately, it also found evidence that arm pain after a motor vehicle accident (if the injury is to the brachial plexus) can cause swelling and increased spasms, which in turn can lead to an increase in abnormal healing.
If you’ve been injured a motor vehicle accident that was not your fault and are experiencing arm pain, tingling, or numbness, you have rights to a fair settlement with the at-fault party’s insurance. The Advocates have decades of experiencing handling motor vehicle accident claims with arm pain involved. Give us a call today—your initial consultation is free!