In extreme cases, the first rib, “Scalene” or “Pec minor” muscles shown above are cut or even surgically removed. These procedures are extremely painful and can lead to all sorts of side effects that actually worsen your TOS symptoms.
Our TOS treatment program is much more effective because it addresses the root cause of your problem. We use a combination of non-surgical, drugless procedures to stretch the contracted muscles of the chest and shoulders, to “unlock” them and allow your body to assume normal posture again.
Our protocol is so effective that most patients notice a marked improvement after just one or two treatments. People who in many cases have been in continuous pain for years.
What makes our treatment program so unique?
We first give you a comprehensive TOS examination. There are dozens of different muscles, nerves and other tissues in your neck and shoulder area, any of which could be responsible for your symptoms.
We methodically examine each one to identify exactly what the root cause of your problem is. After we accurately identify the specific muscles, nerves and other structures causing your symptoms we use specilized rehabilitative exercises, therapies and a home care program to heal you.
Our treatment protocol is effective, works quickly and as mentioned, it’s completely non-surgical. Since many of our patients come from out of the area we include a detailed home program as part of your care plan.
Let’s start with the most common root cause of TOS: our modern lifestyle. Sitting hunched over a computer all day, a long commute to work, picking up little ones and other such activities all take their toll.
After a relatively short time the muscles of your chest can become contracted and stiff, resulting in chronically stooped posture.
When this occurs, your collar bone and chest muscles compress the nerves and blood vessels that pass through the small “thoracic outlet” down to your arms and hands.
This vice-like compression of the nerves and blood vessels in your shoulder area causes pain, tingling and numbness down the arms and hands, much like stepping on a garden hose will cause a sprinkler to shut off many feet away.
So, the most common root cause of TOS symptoms is mechanical pressure on delicate nerves and blood vessels. The solution logically follows from that: take pressure off the nerves and vessels to eliminate the symptoms.
However, muscle relaxers and pain meds do nothing to actually relieve the pressure on the nerves and blood vessels. They just give you temporary numbing relief and the symptoms will return once the meds wear off.
As the chest muscles lengthen and your posture becomes more erect, the collar bone lifts off the compressed nerves and blood vessels.
The space within the “Thoracic Outlet” widens, taking pressure off these structures and relieving your TOS symptoms.
One of the unique pieces of equipment we use is called the Flex-3, a physical rehab device for TOS that we actually developed and patented based on our work with TOS patients.
The Flex-3 is designed to specifically stretch the tight muscles of your upper body that distort posture and compress nerves and blood vessels, causing TOS. You can target these muscles much more effectively than with free style strecthing because the Flex-3 uses a patented mechanical design to precisely guide your body in exactly the right way for maximum effect. The precise stretching movement is exactly replicated every time, which is impossible with a free style rehab routine.
There are over 200 different settings for gradually stretching and legnthening key muscles involved with TOS, such as the Pec minor. It’s a gentle, painless, step-by-step approach for enlarging the Thoracic Outlet. The end result is a beneficial physical change in your body without further damaging or altering it by surgical means, and long-lasting relief from TOS symptoms.
The Flex-3 is currently at the end stage of a 7 year development process and will be available soon for widespread use in physical rehab centers, as well as for sale directly to the public for TOS patients’ use at home.
Until then, you can take advantage of it and the rest of our TOS program under Dr. Carlucci’s personal supervision at our Center.