Thoracic Outlet Syndrome Thoracic Outlet Syndrome/Brachial Plexopathy. In Memory Of DeAnne Marie.

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Old 11-05-2019, 08:16 PM #1
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Default Lying flat on your back

If lying flat on your back with arms at your sides causes you to lose blood flow in an arm (or both arms), is that diagnostic regarding having pec minor vs. VTOS vs. ATOS?

This happens to me and the longer I lie there, the more it feels like the pinch point is over the armpit.

Also, has anyone overcome this particular problem with conservative treatment (and which treatment(s) if so)?

I'm doing pec minor stretches, but I just recently started again so it's too early to tell how much they'll help.
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Old 12-03-2019, 02:47 PM #2
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I am having the same issue which is frustrating as it prevents me from sleeping at times, do you have trouble with this?

I am about to start physical therapy hopefully it will help.
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Old 12-03-2019, 05:24 PM #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nick0 View Post
I am having the same issue which is frustrating as it prevents me from sleeping at times, do you have trouble with this?

I am about to start physical therapy hopefully it will help.
Yes, it was making to hard to sleep! However, I've been doing pec minor stretches 2 X per day and it has really helped. Took about 3 - 4 weeks to kick in. I sleep better now.

Also, I often use a pillow to prop up the left arm (my bad side). I'll fold my arms, which brings the should forward, and then get a pillow into the side.

HTH
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Old 12-06-2019, 08:26 PM #4
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Quote:
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Yes, it was making to hard to sleep! However, I've been doing pec minor stretches 2 X per day and it has really helped. Took about 3 - 4 weeks to kick in. I sleep better now.

Also, I often use a pillow to prop up the left arm (my bad side). I'll fold my arms, which brings the should forward, and then get a pillow into the side.

HTH
Ic thanks... do you have like pain, tingling, and tenderness around your scapula... I've been experiencing this. I'm trying to sleep with a folded towel on my spine to see if it'll open up my pecs while sleeping and lessen the symptoms.
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Old 12-07-2019, 12:05 AM #5
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Ic thanks... do you have like pain, tingling, and tenderness around your scapula... I've been experiencing this. I'm trying to sleep with a folded towel on my spine to see if it'll open up my pecs while sleeping and lessen the symptoms.
Yes re: scapula. For that, I like a couple things:

- Spiky massage ball against the wall. Press your upper back into it and then roll around. This was a breakthrough improvement for me! Here are ones that I like:
https://smile.amazon.com/gp/product/B01C4CQQ2C/
https://smile.amazon.com/gp/product/B00ECASXAS/

I guess that first one is not available, but search for "massage ball" and you'll find them.

- Loosen up the neck and improve posture. This reduces my "downstream" symptoms whether shoulder blade or chest & intercostals.


It's up to you on the folded towel, but personally I wouldn't want to stretch an abnormal amount of time. In addition to stressing the stretched muscles, that stretch brings the collar bones closer to the first rib. As a temporary stretch, I don't have a problem with that. But I wouldn't do that for hours or even more than a few mins.

When I stretch my pec minors more than a few mins, I get symptoms in my hands. YMMV
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Old 12-07-2019, 12:55 PM #6
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Things to try-
we all have various causes & factors so it may or may not help , but might be worth gently testing these.
* slow & easy works better than going all out and then backwards.. due to the delayed pain factor*
Sharon Butler's website explains why gentle stretching is better than hard core forcing stretches.. I found the info very helpful.
Repetitive Strain Injury Self Care

https://www.neurotalk.org/members/100-albums422.html
I spent a lot of time on a soft rolled up towel then got a foam roller & large exercise ball - they all worked for me..

Trigger point work- we have a sticky thread about it..
Top rib mobilization - was a big plus for me --a forum search or web search will find info on it

My version of TOS was due to work postures 15 yrs, past whiplash, past shoulder injuries, plus hyper mobility.. mainly soft tissue based.
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Old 12-08-2019, 12:20 AM #7
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Thanks for the info.

I did the roo's test with my PT and couldn't last more than a minute.... and when I'm trying to do the doorway stretches to open up my pecs.... I started feeling the heaviness and fatigue in less than 20 seconds...... my PT told me not to over exert myself, were u guys in the same boat? Its kind of frustrating when I can't even do the stretches properly to help my symptoms, did you have the same issues because I tried your stretches and they are much more doable and less strenuous.

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Originally Posted by Jo*mar View Post
Things to try-
we all have various causes & factors so it may or may not help , but might be worth gently testing these.
* slow & easy works better than going all out and then backwards.. due to the delayed pain factor*
Sharon Butler's website explains why gentle stretching is better than hard core forcing stretches.. I found the info very helpful.

Trigger point work- we have a sticky thread about it..
Top rib mobilization - was a big plus for me --a forum search or web search will find info on it

My version of TOS was due to work postures 15 yrs, past whiplash, past shoulder injuries, plus hyper mobility.. mainly soft tissue based.
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Old 12-08-2019, 01:03 AM #8
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When I raised my arms up for most of the doorway stretches.. the blood drained out of them.. still does, but I can manage it if I need to hold things up for a short time without symptoms coming back.
But it is not the right thing for me..

Many PTs are programed to do the generic treatment plans..
TOS needs a more advanced & personal approach, communication & adjusting the plan for you and your symptoms.

I had the best help with a very good chiropractor & also PT professor that also had his own clinic.. Plus consistent home work.. and a big reduction of activities that increased symptoms..

Medical providers can only do so much unless surgical or RX'd meds are needed.. much is a lot of self work at home..
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Old 12-09-2019, 02:37 AM #9
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I don't do the doorway versions of the pec minor stretches. I do the floor based ones:

"Lie flat": Lie on your back with legs bent, one arm overhead. Anchor the hand of that arm with something like a book or weighted ball. Let legs drop away from that arm. Feel the stretch. Reference: 9.1 Chest Pectoralis Major & Minor Stretch - YouTube

"Half foam roller": Once the above is comfortable, lie on a half foam roller and do the same stretch though you won't likely need the weight on your hand. You can also stretch out to the side for a chest stretch. I use the half roller "OPTP PRO-Roller Soft Density Foam Roller" at Robot Check

"Full foam roller": Once the above is comfortable, you could possible go to a full foam roller.

"Swiss ball": Once the above is comfortable, you could use a swiss ball.

I'm still on the half foam roller after my pec minor syndrome flared up on me after neglecting to stretch it for months.
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Old 12-12-2019, 07:17 PM #10
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Have any of you been able to find a position or know of a certain med that will get rid of the sensation of your arms feeling "heavy" and about to go numb.... I've been trying different positions, but none have worked and even advil pm doesn't help take that sensation away so I'm having a hard time sleeping at night.....
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