TOS is caused by compression of the neck, upper back, rib cage and the shoulder that squeeze the blood vessels and nerves that pass from the chest and neck through the thoracic tunnel into the arm.
TOS is one of the most controversial conditions in medicine. For most patients there thoracic outlet syndrome is overlooked and misdiagnosed leaving them suffering needlessly in chronic pain for months and even years. Then one day, someone says, "Could it be thoracic outlet syndrome?"
Over the last 30 years, studies confirm that doctor’s knowledge of the basic anatomy has dipped below a safe and acceptable level.
That is why their exams cant determine if you have TOS or one of these similar conditions:
- a herniated disc? a bulged disc? a slipped disc?
- a pinched nerve in the neck? cervical radiculopathy? a brachial plexus injury? brachial neuritis?
- shoulder hyperabduction? a shoulder impingement? a rotator cuff syndrome?
- median nerve entrapment? cubital tunnel syndrome? carpal tunnel syndrome?
- Raynaud's phenomenon? a Pancoast’s lung tumor? a syringomyelia?
- muscular sclerosis? muscular dystrophy?
- cervical ribs? an elevated first rib?
What if it is a combination of a few of these conditions? Oh no!
Confused, doctors order an MRI. You think they are getting down to business but sadly doctors know they can’t diagnose or determine the cause of TOS with an MRI.
If you are misdiagnosed, their treatment approach wont work.
This book has an entire chapter on how to back-check your doctors diagnosis.
There are more than 16 different treatment approaches doctors recommend to treat TOS. Some advocate painkillers, NSAIDS, scalene injections, Botox injections, stretching, traction, nerve gliding, ultrasound, muscle stimulation, dry needling, supports, ergonomic corrections, first rib and spinal adjustments, massage, stretches and exercises. Which one "by itself" removes all the compression that causes TOS and prevents it from returning? None of them!
When these conservative treatments fail, you are facing TOS surgery. There are 4 muscles that lift the first rib (tunnel floor) up into the outlet and 6 muscles that drag the shoulder (tunnel roof) down into the outlet. TOS surgery only removes the rib (floor) and 3 muscles and one of the 6 muscles that drag the shoulder (roof) down into the outlet.
What if you just painkillers and live in chronic pain? The constant compression could cause a blood clot in the vein under the collarbone. If it releases as a pulmonary embolism it could cause a pulmonary infarct that may kill you.
What is the human spring approach?
If you don’t know how the body works a doctor can tell you anything and you have to believe them. Knowing doctors this is not a good position to be in. His teachings will help you sharpen your judgment on what course to take in treatment & prevention.
He teaches how the body uses springs systems to absorb collisions of walking and running, springs to recycle energy and spring engineering to maintain a strong wide open thoracic outlet and tunnel.
The aha moment is when you learn the that most treatments are only effective at restoring your lever mechanisms. You cant restore the thoracic outlet, spring engineering with treatments designed for lever mechanisms only!
This book has photos of 30 self-massage and stretching exercises that you can do yourself to reduce your muscle and joint pain. He also provides photos of the approach he uses to restore your spring so you can show your doctor what to do. There are over 30 stretches & exercises that will lift the roof (shoulder) off the thoracic outlet to prevent TOS from recurring.
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