Thoracic Outlet syndrome is a group of disorders that occur when blood vessels and/or nerves in the space between your collarbone and your first rib (thoracic outlet) are compressed. This can cause pain in your shoulders and neck and numbness in your fingers. Physical therapy is indicated for all except those who failed conservative treatment.
There are 3 main types of thoracic outlet syndrome:
- Neurogenic: Affects nerves leading from the spinal cord to the neck to the arm.
- Venous: Affects veins
- Arterial: Affects arteries
About 95% of thoracic outlet syndrome cases involve nerves and it can affect anyone. You are most likely to feel them in your arms and hands which can include any or all the following: pain in the neck, shoulder, or arm; numbness and tingling: swelling; weakness; discoloration; cold hands.