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Q. How long will it take for a fracture to heal and function perfectly?

Answered by
Dr. Sumit Chawla
and medically reviewed by iCliniq medical review team.
This is a premium question & answer published on Sep 10, 2016 and last reviewed on: Aug 04, 2020

Hi doctor,

Three months ago, I fractured my left clavicle. The bones were displaced and the doctors advised to heal it conservatively. They used sling and the figure of 8 brace for six weeks for the same. No retraction for alignment or surgery was performed. It has been three months and still I have slight pain in the joint. There is an obvious bump. In x-rays, it still looks like a fractured bone with no joint in between. It pains to lift the hand sideways and while lifting weights. I am a pilot. I need this fracture to heal perfectly and the full functioning of the shoulder also has to be restored to start flying. How long will it take?

Dr. Sumit Chawla

Orthopedics And Traumatology


Welcome to

  • Conservative management of clavicle fracture followed by rehabilitation for complete shoulder movements may take up to three months of time under normal circumstances.
  • Bump during fracture healing is a normal phenomenon and it is due to callus formation. It resolves as the bone remodels itself over the years.
  • For proper assessment of your case, I would like to see your x-rays both post injury and after the conservative management.

Revert back with the x-rays to an orthopaedician and traumatologist online -->

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Thank you doctor,

I have attached my x-ray taken three months before.

Dr. Sumit Chawla

Orthopedics And Traumatology


Welcome back to

I have seen the images posted along with your query (attachment removed to protect patient identity).

  • It appears that the fracture might land up nonunion and will require operative intervention. The only thing that ensures the union will take place is clinical examination.
  • If there is no mobility at the fracture site, then the fracture will unite. If the fracture ends are still mobile, then it will lead to nonunion.
  • You need to visit your local orthopedic doctor and get a physical evaluation regarding the same.

For further information consult an orthopaedician and traumatologist online -->

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