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Hang in there and take action!

Tools, resources, and information from a fellow TOS sufferer

First the good news: most cases of Thoracic Outlet Syndrome are treatable and your chances for recovery are good. That means you should be optimistic, regardless of how bad things may seem right now!

Thoracic Outlet Syndrome (TOS) can be a very painful condition that can affect various parts of your body in different ways. You may experience mild to severe pain in your shoulder, chest, neck, arm, hands, and/or fingers, as well as numbness or tingling. There is quite a bit of variability in terms of symptoms, and you may find that your pain pattern changes or that you feel like you regress after your conditions improve. The key is to stay positive!

The National Institute of Health describes TOS as:

“The nerves or blood vessels just below your neck are compressed, or squeezed. It can be between the muscles of your neck and shoulder or between the first rib and collarbone. You may feel burning, tingling and numbness along your arm, hand, and fingers. If a nerve is compressed, you may also feel weakness in your hand. If a vein is compressed, your hand might be sensitive to cold, or turn pale or bluish. Your arm might swell and tire easily.

TOS can be a repetitive stress injury. An extra rib, scar tissue, traumatic injury or inherited defects can also cause TOS. Treatment depends on what caused your TOS. Medicines, physical therapy and relaxation might help. Surgery may also be an option. Most people recover.”

Thoracic Outlet

About This Site

I decided to put this site up after being diagnosed with Thoracic Outlet Syndrome in early 2013. In the early days, as I began to learn more about TOS, I quickly learned that Google, Amazon, and YouTube are your friends.

I put up this site because I wish that someone had told me about the tools and resources that I should be using very early on. Unfortunately, while I was able to find lots of reference information and some sites dedicated to the surgical treatment of TOS, there wasn’t a site where I could easily have those a-ha! moments in terms of books and tools, especially those about trigger point therapy, that I could start using from day 1. This site is intended to give you quick access to actionable tools and resources that will help you treat your TOS.

I will be adding additional resources to the site over time, as I am still actively exploring what’s available out there in terms of tools and resources for TOS sufferers. I hope you find this site helpful.

Who am I? I’ve made a conscious decision to remain anonymous. Thank you for respecting my decision.

Don’t Wait to See a Doctor If You Suspect You Have Thoracic Outlet Syndrome!

So you think you have TOS and you’re probably wondering what your next steps are? If you haven’t already had a doctor diagnose your symptoms, you should do so right away. Make the appointment right now. Time is of the essence.

If you’ve already been diagnosed with TOS, this site is intended to be a resource with some information that you may find valuable in treating your TOS, though you should keep in mind that there is no “quick fix” for TOS. Being realistic and pragmatic about the condition will help you in dealing with it over however long it may afflict you.

Seriously: now is not the time to play the guessing game. You may have Thoracic Outlet Syndrome, but you may also have one of many other types of diseases or complications. Be sure to get medical advice even if you don’t think that your condition is bad.

Hang in There!

No matter what, you need to remain optimistic. First take some comfort in the fact that you’re not alone. A lot of other people suffer from Thoracic Outlet Syndrome and most have recovered.

In addition to being optimistic, you need to be proactive. Don’t expect your symptoms to go away overnight and don’t assume that there is a magic pill that will make it all better. The name of the game is patience, perseverance, and activity. You might try stretching, trigger point therapy, accupuncture, chiropratic care, and a range of other treatments that may or may not work. Remember that we’re all individuals, so you might find that something that worked for hundreds of other TOS sufferers may not work for you and vice versa.

Take control of your health by ensuring that you’re actively discussing your symptoms and progress with your doctor. Don’t be afraid to get a second, third, or fourth opinion. This is both art and science in the end, so you need to find someone who will work with you in the way that you want to be helped..

Lastly, stay strong and hang in there! No matter how bad or strange the pain gets.

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