Pain in the neck, shoulder, arm, hands – even headache – may be due to thoracic outlet syndrome (TOS). This is a general medical term that refers to entrapments and pinched nerves occurring in the neck and shoulder region, but outside the spine. The most common features of this disorder are pain and numbness in the ring and little finger and the experience of increased pain and numbness, even weakness when working with your arms lifted or overhead.
To be sure, there are many incidences of neck, shoulder, arm and hand pain due to the spine.
However, in about half of these cases the spine is normal and the real problem is in the nerves of the “brachial plexus” that travel through the thoracic outlet along with the arteries and veins.
In the past, there has been no good way to diagnose thoracic outlet syndrome. But with the advent of magnetic resonance neurography, the the diagnosis of TOS has become reliable and accurate.
It is important to consider a nerve-related cause to these types of pain before you undergo spinal surgery; the problem may be related to thoracic outlet syndrome. The first step in receiving an accurate diagnosis is to have a neurography scan at The Neurography Institute’s Portland, Oregon, Nerve Scan Center. Complete the form below to begin the process to a pain-free lifestyle.