5 doctors weighed in:
Do doctors, during surgery really remove a rib to treat thoracic outlet syndrome?
5 doctors weighed in

Dr. David Cooke
Surgery - Thoracic
3 doctors agree
In brief: Yes
Thoracic out let syndrome is caused by narrowing of the space in the chest that contains the nerves (brachial plexus) and arteries (axillary artery and veins).
Sometimes an extra rib, called the cervical rib narrows the space. Usually it is the 1st rib and the anterior scalene muscle. Surgery to remove the 1st rib and the ant scalene muscle can help with symptoms.

In brief: Yes
Thoracic out let syndrome is caused by narrowing of the space in the chest that contains the nerves (brachial plexus) and arteries (axillary artery and veins).
Sometimes an extra rib, called the cervical rib narrows the space. Usually it is the 1st rib and the anterior scalene muscle. Surgery to remove the 1st rib and the ant scalene muscle can help with symptoms.
Dr. David Cooke
Dr. David Cooke
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Dr. Richard Sanders
Surgery - Vascular
In brief: Yes, sometimes
Usually the rib is not the problem. The problem is scarring and tightness in the muscles attached to the rib.
This can be treated by removing the muscles thru a neck incision and leaving the rib or removing it, depending on the findings at surgery. Some doctors remove the rib through the arm pit in order to release the muscles attached to it. Through the arm pit, the rib must be removed.

In brief: Yes, sometimes
Usually the rib is not the problem. The problem is scarring and tightness in the muscles attached to the rib.
This can be treated by removing the muscles thru a neck incision and leaving the rib or removing it, depending on the findings at surgery. Some doctors remove the rib through the arm pit in order to release the muscles attached to it. Through the arm pit, the rib must be removed.
Dr. Richard Sanders
Dr. Richard Sanders
Thank
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