PreventionBy Mayo Clinic staff
Thoracic outlet syndrome that goes untreated for years can cause permanent neurological damage, so it's important to deal with the symptoms early or, even better, to prevent the disorder altogether. If you're susceptible to thoracic outlet compression, avoid repetitive movements and lifting heavy objects. If you're overweight, you can prevent or relieve symptoms associated with thoracic outlet syndrome by losing weight.
Even if you don't have symptoms of thoracic outlet syndrome, avoid carrying heavy bags over your shoulder, because this can increase pressure on the thoracic outlet. Stretch daily, and perform exercises that keep your shoulder muscles strong.
- Sheon RP. Overview of the nerve entrapment syndromes. http://www.uptodate.com/home/index.html. Accessed Sept. 7, 2010.
- NINDS thoracic outlet syndrome information page. National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke. http://www.ninds.nih.gov/disorders/thoracic/thoracic.htm. Accessed Sept. 4, 2010.
- Thoracic outlet syndrome. American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons. http://orthoinfo.aaos.org/topic.cfm?topic=a00336. Accessed Sept. 4, 2010.
- Thoracic outlet syndrome. National Pain Foundation. http://www.nationalpainfoundation.org/articles/577/what-is-it? Accessed Sept. 4, 2010.
- Thoracic outlet compression syndromes. The Merck Manuals: The Merck Manual for Healthcare Professionals. http://www.merck.com/mmpe/sec16/ch223/ch223k.html?qt=thoracic%20outlet%20syndrome&alt=sh. Accessed Sept. 4, 2010.
- Thoracic outlet syndrome. Society for Vascular Surgery. http://www.vascularweb.org/vascularhealth/Pages/ThoracicOutletSyndrome.aspx. Accessed Sept. 4, 2010.