You probably do not give much thought to your elbow. Still, because you need a functioning elbow to navigate everyday life, it is virtually impossible to ignore an injury. Further, if you have ever banged your elbow, you know how painful an elbow injury can be.

During any automobile collision, you may sustain an injury to your head, neck, back and limbs. While seeking emergency treatment following a crash is essential for protecting vital parts of your body, you should not ignore elbow pain. Here are four common elbow injuries you may sustain in an automobile accident.

  1. Fractures

Your elbow is the intersection of three bones. When you are in a car crash, you may fracture any or all of these. As you may know, some fractures are minor, and others are serious. Still, even a hairline break can cause excruciating pain. Even worse, if you do not have adequate medical care, bones may heal incorrectly.

  1. Ligament damage

Like other joints in your body, your elbow has ligaments and other connective tissues to help control movement. During a car crash, you may overextend, tear or sprain the ligaments in your elbow. Unfortunately, soft-tissue damage can take a considerable amount of time to heal.

  1. Dislocation

A dislocated elbow can be unbearably painful. Even though you may not break a bone or tear connective tissue, a dislocation may be quite serious. In fact, you likely need medical care to relocate the joint. Because subsequent dislocations are common after an initial one, you may also have lifelong complications following a car accident.

  1. Lacerations

During a car crash, your elbow may hit hard objects in your vehicle. Because there is not much fat or muscle between the skin and elbow bones, you may suffer a deep cut or another type of laceration. Of course, if you scrape your elbow’s skin across a rough surface, you may even develop road rash.

While you may worry about your head, neck and vital organs following any car accident, you cannot ignore elbow health.