Patients on the North Shore seeking thoracic outlet syndrome treatment receive world-class, compassionate care at North Shore Medical Center (NSMC). Thoracic outlet syndrome refers to a variety of disorders resulting from compression, injury or irritation of the nerves and/or blood vessels in the upper chest or lower neck area. Causes include tumors, stress, injury to the neck or back, poor posture, stress, weightlifting, sleep disorders, repetitive arm or shoulder movement, and injuries from carrying heavy shoulder loads. Symptoms include pain or numbness in the neck, shoulder and arm.
Thoracic surgeon Dean M. Donahue, MD, Chief of Thoracic Surgery at NSMC Salem Hospital, is an expert in thoracic outlet syndrome treatment. He holds joint appointments at NSMC and Massachusetts General Hospital. North Shore patients of Dr. Donahue may receive treatment close to home at his Salem campus office, or they may choose to see him in Boston. His Salem number is 978.745.1581.
If a patient does not respond to non-surgical thoracic outlet syndrome treatment, surgery may be required. Thoracic outlet syndrome surgery options include:
In some cases, patients may be eligible for video-assisted thoracoscopic surgery (VATS), in which a cardiothoracic surgeon uses instruments and a camera inserted through several small incisions to conduct the surgery. VATS surgery is less invasive, allowing patients to recover more quickly.