Format

Send to

Choose Destination
J Vasc Surg. 2012 Oct;56(4):1061-7; discussion 1068. doi: 10.1016/j.jvs.2012.03.262. Epub 2012 Jul 6.

Management of unresolved, recurrent, and/or contralateral neurogenic symptoms in patients following first rib resection and scalenectomy.

Author information

1
Division of Vascular Surgery and Endovascular Therapy, Johns Hopkins Medical Institutions, Baltimore, MD, USA. danielle.rochlin@jhmi.edu

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

Surgical treatment for neurogenic thoracic outlet syndrome does not always yield successful outcomes. The purpose of this study was to describe patients with unresolved, recurrent, and/or contralateral symptoms following first rib resection and scalenectomy (FRRS) and to determine therapies for improving their outcomes.

METHODS:

Data on 161 neurogenic thoracic outlet syndrome patients (182 FRRS procedures) were prospectively collected from 2003 to 2011 and retrospectively reviewed for evidence of unresolved, recurrent, and/or contralateral neurogenic symptoms following FRRS. Demographic and clinical characteristics, interventions, and outcomes were compared between these patients and those with a successful result.

RESULTS:

Twenty-three patients (24 FRRS) had unresolved symptoms at a mean of 16.1 ± 14.7 postoperative months. Compared with successes, these patients were older (mean age, 45 vs 38 years; P = .002) and active smokers (33% vs 13%; P = .031), with a longer duration of symptoms (90 vs 48 months; P = .005). They had higher rates of chronic pain syndromes (67% vs 14%; P < .001), neck and/or shoulder comorbidities (58% vs 22%; P < .001), preoperative opioid use (67% vs 31%; P = .001), and preoperative Botox injections (46% vs 20%; P = .009) with less relief (18% vs 64%; P = .014). Sixteen patients had recurrent symptoms at a mean of 12.1 ± 9.7 postoperative months. These patients had more chronic pain syndromes (38%; P = .028) and neck and/or shoulder comorbidities (50%; P = .027), with recurrence secondary to scar tissue (69%; P < .001) and reinjury (31%; P = .002). Postoperative treatments for both groups included physical therapy and local injections, where six unresolved (26%) and 13 recurrent (81%) patients achieved freedom from opioids at the end of the follow-up period. Twenty-one patients had contralateral symptoms and underwent secondary FRRS at a mean of 15.0 months (range, 7-30 months) following primary FRRS. The first operation was successful in 90% of cases.

CONCLUSIONS:

Patients with unresolved symptoms are older, active smokers with more comorbid pain syndromes, neck and/or shoulder disease, and a longer symptom duration. These patients face a more difficult recovery, whereas patients with recurrent symptoms are well managed with physical therapy and Botox injections. Patients with contralateral symptoms at >1 year are effectively treated with secondary FRRS. Patients must be followed closely after FRRS to determine if additional interventions are necessary to ensure successful results.

PMID:
22770848
DOI:
10.1016/j.jvs.2012.03.262
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free full text

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for Elsevier Science
Loading ...
Support Center