The Thoracic Outlet Center of N.J.

What is "Thoraic Outlet Syndrome"?

Thoracic Outlet Syndrome (TOS) refers to a group of disorders frequently seen together, caused by compression of nerves and blood vessels at the “Thoracic Outlet” space within the shoulder.

Typical symptoms include pain, tingling, weakness or numbness spreading from the neck into the shoulder, arm and hand.

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. This can cause serious damage to your spine in as little as 6 to 9 months.

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.

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 safe and 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.

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.

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 TOS 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. And since many of our patients come from out of the area we include a detailed home program as part of your care plan.

If you would like find out if our program can help you, please call 732-370-5800 to schedule a free Initial Consultation with Dr. Carlucci.

Normal neck
6 to 9 months later