[toc]Thoracic outlet syndrome is a condition in which symptoms are produced due to compression of nerves or blood vessels or both. This is a result of an inadequate passageway through a thoracic outlet between the base of the armpit and neck. The thoracic outlet is surrounded by muscle, bone and other tissues. Any condition that leads to an enlargement or movement of the tissues of or near the thoracic outlet can cause thoracic outlet syndrome.
The symptoms of thoracic outlet syndrome are pain in shoulder, arm and neck, numbness or impaired circulation to the extremities causing discoloration. The pains can also extend to the hands and fingers and can cause weakness as well. There are a host of reasons responsible for causing thoracic outlet syndrome. In this article, we have summed up some of the most common causes of thoracic outlet syndrome. Let us take a look!
5 Causes Of Thoracic Outlet Syndrome
Certain inherited defects can be congenital and can persist right from birth. Such anatomical defects may include an extra rib located exactly above the first rib or the cervical rib or an abnormally tight fibrous band that connects the spine to the rib. Thus, anatomical defects can be a major reason for causing thoracic outlet syndrome in an individual.
Poor posture has been many times associated with thoracic outlet syndrome. Keeping your shoulders drooped or holding your head in a hanging or forward position can cause compression in the area of the thoracic outlet, thus causing thoracic outlet syndrome. Sitting in front of the computer for long hours can result in the back being bent for a considerable period of time or walking in an ugly manner can also result in thoracic outlet syndrome.
Trauma can also be held as a possible cause of thoracic outlet syndrome. A traumatic event such as car accident, burn accident, a fatal fall, etc. can result in certain internal changes that can compress the nerves in the area of the thoracic region, thus leading to thoracic outlet syndrome. However, in many cases, it is seen that the onset of the symptoms related to a traumatic accident is often delayed or late.
Pregnancy is also often associated with the symptoms of thoracic outlet syndrome. As the joints of the body loosen during pregnancy, it is seen that the signs of thoracic outlet syndrome first appear while a woman is pregnant.
Therefore, many pregnant ladies suffer from this condition. Pregnancy also causes too much stress on the joints and so it is likely that thoracic outlet syndrome will develop.
Pressure On The Joints
Exerting too much pressure on the joints can lead to thoracic outlet syndrome as well. Such pressure can be exerted on the joints as a result of carrying heavy load, like a backpack or an extra big bag on the back.
Even being obese can cause immense pressure being exerted on the joints as a result of which thoracic outlet syndrome can be caused. It is because of this reason that many obese and fat people suffer from this condition.