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Doctor insights on: Thoracic Outlet Syndrome

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Dr. Bennett Machanic
295 doctors shared insights

Thoracic Outlet Syndrome (Overview)

Thoracic outlet Syndrome is a medical condition caused by compression of the nerves and blood vessels that run in the neck. Symptoms include pain in the neck and shoulder, numbness and tingling of the fingers, and a weak grip.


Dr. David Cooke
Board Certified, Thoracic Surgery
16 years in practice
1M people helped
1

1
What is the most common cause of thoracic outlet syndrome?

What is the most common cause of thoracic outlet syndrome?

Narrow space: The most common cause is a narrow space between the first rib and a muscle tendon from the anterior scalene muscle. Other causes included an aberrent cervical rib. ...Read more

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Dr. Eric Weisman
Board Certified
30 years in practice
4M people helped
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Dr. Bennett Machanic
295 doctors shared insights

Thoracic Outlet Syndrome (Overview)

Thoracic outlet Syndrome is a medical condition caused by compression of the nerves and blood vessels that run in the neck. Symptoms include pain in the neck and shoulder, numbness and tingling of the fingers, and a weak grip.


Dr. Daniel Clair
Board Certified, Vascular Surgery
29 years in practice
17K people helped
2

2
What are the symptoms of thoracic outlet syndrome?

Pain, numbness: Thoracic outlet syndrome can affect the vein, artery or nerves of the arms. Symptoms can include swelling of the arms, (vein compression) pain or numbness when using the arms overhead, or pain that can extend from the neck or shoulder down to the hands or fingers. Most symptoms are aggravated by doing things that narrow the space where vein, atery and nerve travelling to the arm are. ...Read more

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Dr. Eric Weisman
Board Certified
30 years in practice
4M people helped
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Dr. Slade Suchecki
Board Certified, Family Medicine
12 years in practice
1M people helped
3

3
My hand has a bluish hue, is this a sign of thoracic outlet syndrome?

? Raynauds: Blue hands do sound more vascular. If pain is associated, please get this evaluated immediately. If it is intermittent and associated with cold temperatures, stress or tobacco and caffiene use it may be raynauds syndrome. This should be discussed with your primary care provider as it may be secondary to an underlying condition - in severe cases, you can lose fingers. ...Read more

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Dr. Alvin Lin
Board Certified, Geriatrics
24 years in practice
72M people helped
4

4
I'm looking for a doctor near los angeles who specializes in thoracic outlet syndrome. I don't have a diagnosis yet. How can I get a referral?

Ask your family doc!: I guess i'm confused. Why look for a doctor to treat thoracic outlet syndrome if you don't have a diagnosis? Wouldn't it be better to get a diagnosis first? Regardless, your family physician (who can assist you in reaching a diagnosis) can also refer you to someone who can treat you appropriately. Are you prepared to pay out of pocket? If not, limit yourself to those who accept your insurance. ...Read more

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Dr. Eric Weisman
Board Certified
30 years in practice
4M people helped
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Dr. Paul Cohen
Board Certified, Family Medicine
22 years in practice
2M people helped
5

5
I was in a car accident, I was diagnosed with thoracic outlet syndrome. What can I do next?

Manual Medicine: Aside from anti-inflammatories; and rest you should find a good osteopath as he/she can treat this easily. Otherwise you may need some physical therapy and possibly further evaluation...Check in with your doctor about this. ...Read more

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Dr. Bennett Machanic
Board Certified, Neurology
46 years in practice
47M people helped
6

6
If I do the "hands up" test for thoracic outlet syndrome and my opposite hand turns white and pulses and tingles.. What does that mean ?

If I do the "hands up" test for thoracic outlet syndrome and my opposite hand turns white and pulses and tingles.. What does that mean ?

May have TOS: On the surface, you describe potential compression of blood vessels and nerves over the lower brachial plexus. This could be consistent with thoracic outlet, but could merely represent a transient compression due to a relatively small area over your shoulder/chest region. If you are concerned have your doctor assess this. ...Read more

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Dr. Daniel Clair
Board Certified, Vascular Surgery
29 years in practice
17K people helped
7

7
What are tests for thoracic outlet syndrome?

No specific test: Unfortunately, there is no specific "thoracic outlet syndrome test". There are a number of things that may lead your physician to consider this diagnosis, but quite frankly the diagnosis is often overlooked. Symptoms are pain above your collarbone or in the affected arm, but the process can also affect the vein and artery to the arm. Studies of the arteries and veins can confirm the diagnosis. ...Read more

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Dr. Craig Carter
Board Certified, Thoracic Surgery
34 years in practice
939K people helped
8

8
I have thoracic outlet syndrome (tos) arm/neck pain not from the spine. What should I do?

I have thoracic outlet syndrome (tos) arm/neck pain not from the spine. What should I do?

Evaluation: You should be seen by someone with an interest in treating thoracic outlet syndrome. This can be a surgeon, neurologist, orthopedic surgeon, etc. Physical therapy is almost always the first line of therapy. ...Read more

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Dr. Brian Mott
Board Certified, Thoracic Surgery
23 years in practice
531K people helped
9

9
What does this mean: cervical rib and thoracic outlet syndrome?

What does this mean: cervical rib and thoracic outlet syndrome?

Nerves are pinched: Thoracic outlet is the result of the big nerves and blood vessels in the neck and chest being pinched by the muscles and bones at the top of the rib cage as they exit towards the arms. A cervical rib is just one cause of this problem. It can be treated with physical therapy or surgery. ...Read more

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Dr. Rodeen Rahbar
Board Certified, Vascular Surgery
14 years in practice
260K people helped
10

10
Anyone out there ever treat thoracic outlet syndrome?

Yes: There are three major types. The most common is related to pain and nerve compression. This one responds to physical therapy sometimes. The other two types may involve the artery or vein. These are less common. The treatment can be a bit controversial, espescially the nerve compression type. See a surgeon experienced in thoracic outlet disease such as a vascular or cardiothoracic surgeon. ...Read more

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Dr. Eric Weisman
Board Certified, Neurology
30 years in practice
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