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TornLabrum
March 10th, 2010, 02:23 PM
Ive swam competitively through college and have just been diagnosed with a torn labrum causing secondary thorasic outlet syndrome. Basically my arm/hand is numb and asleep most of the time. Its worse when raised over head and obviously is painful to rotate in a swimming type motion. I am going to have arthroscopic surgery two weeks from now to repair the labrum and am hoping this will reverse the thorasic outlet symptoms. I was wondering if anyone had delt with anything similar and had any advice. Recovery time? Ease of rehibilitation? Will the numbness in my arm just vanish when the labrum is repaired?

ElaineK
March 10th, 2010, 03:35 PM
My sympathy and empathy is with you! Although I can't answer your question, because my thoracic outlet syndrome was PRIMARY, I know what you are going through. I developed thoracic outlet syndrome when I was a server in a private gourmet dining/ city club, where dinners were served on heavy china plates with glass domes. Appetizer and dessert samplers were served on slabs of marble. You get the idea; I was reaching out and extending my shoulder and arm and placing very heavy items on tables. That's aside from the heavy lifting I was doing for set-up and clean-up. I was the only gal, so I was doing the same work the guys were doing, except I was doing it with a 5'8" 122 lb. frame with a long neck and long arms. It was a disaster waiting to happen- and it did. I had a first rib resection in 2003 to open up the space between my clavicle and first rib; a 41/2 hour dangerous surgery. Needless to say, it was successful, because, here I am swimming in Masters! :D I never thought I would be able to swim again- or do many of the things I am now doing. Fortunately, I had the best surgeon on the west coast for this particular surgery.- Dr. Richard Braun, of San Diego, California.

My advice at this point: Ask your surgeon the questions you asked here. There is no accurate answer for the last question; only your surgeon who knows your medical history can give you an accurate answer. There are too many variables: How long have you had these symptoms? Have you had a nerve conduction study to learn the extent of the nerve involvement? Etc. The numbness you are experiencing means there is nerve impingement. The longer you have it, the longer it will take for the nerves to regenerate post-surgery. If not treated, you could end up with permanent nerve damage. If you are lucky, it hasn't been going on too long, so your recovery will be quicker.

Whatever you do, LISTEN TO YOUR SURGEON. Do your post-op exercises and get physical therapy if it is prescribed.

Research "thoracic outlet syndrome" on the internet to learn more. Just make sure you are going to GOOD websites for your information. http://www.mayoclinic.com , http://medlineplus.gov, and http://www.webmd.com are good places to start. And, any website with an .edu extension from a good university would also be recommended.

Good luck with your surgery and recovery!