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Enlarged trapezius, pain in upper back and shoulders, finger numbness, clavicle swelling, popping in shoulder blade. Thoracic outlet syndrome?

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Orthopaedic Surgeon
Practicing since : 1999
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I have enlarged trapezius that causes a dull ache in my upper back and shoulders. Numbness into pinky fingers. Swelling in clavicle area. Tremendous popping in shoulder blade area. The levator scalpula has become so tight that it crunches when I touch it. I have been told that my scalenes are extremely tight and have elevated my first rib. My pectorals are extremely shortened and my shoulders are curving forward. This in turn is affecting my pelvis. Does it sound like I have thoracic outlet syndrome or something else.
Posted Sat, 9 Jun 2012 in Back Pain
Answered by Dr. Amit Agarwal 22 hours later
Thanks for writing in.
Going purely by your description of the symptoms, there could be two possibilities:
1. Ankylosing Spondylitis - this is an auto-immune disorder mainly affecting the joints of the axial skeleton, ultimately causing spinal deformity especially in the region of the chest wall.
2. Scoliosis- in this condition, the spinal column bends to the side causing deformity. It could be due to various factors like trauma/ infection/pathological/ idiopathic.

I would suggest that you get the following tests done and we can discuss the results on this forum:
1. Blood investigations: HLA-B27, ANA(anti-nuclear antibodies), CRP(C reactive protein), RA FACTOR(rheumatoid factor), ASLO (anti streptolysin antibodies) .


Dr.Amit Agarwal.
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