Archive | November 26th, 2013

OPTIONS FOR THOSE WITH THORACIC OUTLET SYNDROME

November 26, 2013

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thoracicThoracic outlet syndrome (TOS) happens when the bundle of nerves and blood vessels that passes through the neck and collarbone gets pinched between to muscle groups in the shoulder. This can manifest in minor discomfort or excruciating pain, usually centered around the limbs that the nerve and blood vessel bundle feeds into.

Sometimes it can only be felt as a bit of numbness in the pinky and ring fingers, or an ache in the upper or lower arm, shoulder, or neck, sometimes even the back. Tingling and discoloration can occur too.

Moderate to extreme cases of TOS can seriously affect the patient’s quality of life, as it certainly limits the activities that one can engage in. Signing up for a gym membership, of joining a martial arts class, for example, must be carefully weighted and considered. A lot of women decide to forego having children as they fear that pregnancy might aggravate symptoms. And not only that, but the physicality of taking care of a baby and rearing a child may be too much for a body that suffers from thoracic outlet syndrome.

For those who suffer severely, only surgery can offer relief. For mild to moderate cases, some physical therapy is sufficient to address the symptoms. Physiotherapy treatments usually involve improving the posture, so that the least possible pressure is exerted on the neurovascular bundle. When patients learn to open up their chests when they’re walking and during their everyday activities, it loosens up the muscles in the neck and shoulder and minimizes the pinch that it makes on the nerves. Exercises that stretch out the nerves that run from the neck to the hand help a lot too.

If you live in Chicago, you can make a consultation at Piano Vein & Vascular to learn about treatment options.

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STRESS RELIEF

November 26, 2013

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stressThe best vein treatment you can give yourself is to simply not get stressed. When you’re stressed and tense, your veins and blood vessels get tense too, constricting and narrowing and ultimately causing you to have high blood pressure, not to mention one of the many types of anxiety disorders. All it takes is to breathe deeply and retreat into your mind for a few seconds. Notice how your breath shortens when you’re worried, and your body starts to wind up and coil around itself like a spring? You can get some much needed relief and release when you close your eyes and breathe in and breathe out, slowly. Concentrate on the air coming in and out of your lungs. Pretend that you’re breathing in bright, warm light and life when you inhale, and with every exhale, see in your mind that you are expelling all the darkness and negative emotions within you. Let go of your burdens and just be. Just breathe. Appreciate the beauty and calm that Southfield seems to have in abundance.

Another way you can help your cardiovascular system is to eat right and exercise regularly. A healthy and balanced diet with lots of vegetables and right fats in the right amounts will ensure that your arteries are free of clogs that could hinder efficient blood flow. Exercising, on the other hand, gets your heart working, which strengthens the cardiac muscles, and gets the blood pumping which allows it to circulate better, bringing much needed nutrients to the cells and bringing out excess water and other waste products. It doesn’t hurt that physical activity releases feel-good endorphins that help you relax and breathe easier.

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