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5/8/2016 Latest post:
February 14, 2014 I laid down in bed and my left arm went numb. I visited the doctor the next day and she came to the conclusion I had pinched a nerve. I did 2 months of physical therapy, modified my workouts and rocked on. The numbness became easy to ignore. May of 2015, I began having headaches off and on, and the numbness in the arm was once again bothersome. On September 23 of 2015 I got an unreal headache that has stuck with me day in and day out for over 7 months. During that 7 months, I have seen 24 doctors to try and figure out what was going on. I didn't respond to any of the migraine medications and the scans and tests were all coming back normal. All the while, the headache continued to get worse and my arm became even more overwhelmed with numbness. Finally, in March a sweet man that did an arterial doplar on my left arm suggested some tests that he couldn't remeber the name of, but he thought that might be the answer to identifying my issue. In the mean time, I recieved an assesment from a personal trainer at the gym. She was surprised to find that I was unable to control my left arm when it was in the air. I had a visit with Dr. Conner in Arlington, my neurologist, and told him about all of the odd things that I had noticed and the suggested tests. He was able to confirm that there was no pulse in my left arm when it was raised up in the air. This lead to more tests! Finally, the middle of April brought about a diagnosis of Thoracic Outlet Syndrome, but I needed to see a specialist to find out what kind I had and if I was a candidate for the surgery to fix it. Last week, my sister, Kelly and I ventured to Dallas to see the top TOS doctor in the United States, Dr. Gregory Pearl. He officially diagnosed me with the very rare condition of Neurogenic Thoracic Outlet Syndrome with Arterial Compression. This is a fancy phrase meaning that at sometime I injured my anterior scalene muscle (the muscle that runs from the neck to the first rib). When this muscle is injured, it begins to shorten. Over time after shortening, it has pulled my clavicle down to the first rib and is compressing on nerves and the subclavian artery. This is the reason for the numb arm and headache! To finally have an answer was a blessing! The only way to fix this is by having Rib Resection surgery and a scalenectomy (the first rib is removed and the anterior scalene muscle will be cut out). I am so fourtanate that Dr. Pearl is in Dallas and he had an opening to perform this procedure for me on Monday, May 9, 2016 at 11 a.m. He performs over 200 of these surgeries a year, mostly on professional athletes. TOS is extremely rare and according to my doctor there are maybe 200,000 a year world wide. Please keep me in your thoughts and prayers, but know that I am so excited to be having this done so soon and have relief in sight. The surgery will take 1 hour and 20 minutes and I will stay in the hospital for 1-2 days. I will have 8-12 weeks of rehab and I should be 90% 2-3 months after the surgery. I will have weight restrictions for 6-8 weeks. **Disclaimer for my MK customers- please know that I am dedicated to continuing to provide you with the excellent customer service you know and love. I have many people that I will be happy to let help me. Please do not feel like you are doing anyone any favors by not calling, texting or emailing for your all your MK needs. After all, my family will appreciate continuing to eat and have electricity during this time!! Thank you for your continuing support and I still have huge goals that I am determined to reach in the next 2 months, of course it will only be possible with your help! Thank you for 18 great years in this wonderful company, it would not have been possible with out you, my customers!!** I am beyond blessed to have such amazing people in my life. I will keep this website up to date during my recovery and my family will update it after surgery so everyone can be in the know.