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Dr. Andrew Rynne

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Have extra ribs. Getting headache and tingling in hand. Can surgery help?

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Dr. Anantharamakrishnan

Cardiologist

Practicing since :1966

Answered : 4506 Questions

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Posted on Tue, 12 Feb 2013 in Headache and Migraines
Question: I've been told I have 2 extra ribs. Will removal of them help my headaches and numbness in my hands? Even if the headache isn't excruciating I always seem to have a headache on a daily basis. Especially when I dry my hair, I get numbness and tingling in my hands. Also laying in bed at night reading. Have had pain in my upper left back for a month. Thought it was a pulled muscle. Got an X-ray and Dr. saw 2 extra ribs. Said it could be causing headaches. Iv'e had migraines since I was 14. Also neck pain. Well I have a stiff neck at the end of the day.
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Answered by Dr. Anantharamakrishnan 2 hours later
Hi friend,
Welcome to Health Care Magic

You probably refer to cervical ribs - above the usual rib cage.
[Extra ribs can also be at the lower end of the rib cage].

It could be pressing on the nerves - brachial plexus.
[They can also compress the blood vessels to the arm.]
Removal will relieve the pressure and help numbness and tingling of the hands.

Headache is less likely to be influenced by it.
There are pain clinics / headache specialists!
There are rescue medicines and prophylactic medicines.
You will benefit by seeing a neurologist / a few investigations may be in order.

Take care
Wishing speedy recovery
God bless
Good luck

Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Chakravarthy Mazumdar
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