8 Things to Know About Winged Scapula

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Breast cancer patients are at risk for a host of comorbid diseases and unpleasant treatment side effects. The sheer number of potential health issues that could come up while you’re being treated for breast cancer is overwhelming, and it’s nearly impossible to know everything there is to know about them.

One of the lesser known side effects of breast cancer surgeries is known as winged scapula. The list below will tell you everything you need to know about this painful and confounding condition—from how to know if you have it to how to treat it and get on with your life.

Here are some important things you should know about breast cancer and the potential treatment side effect known as winged scapula.

8. What is winged scapula?

Winged scapula refers to a lack of muscular support of the medial scapula (or shoulder blade) against the thoracic wall. This results in a scapula that sticks out more prominently from the patient’s back than it should. This condition is also known as scapular winging or scapula alata.

7. What causes this condition?

Sports injuries, surgeries, or other health issues can cause nerve damage and result in winged scapula, but breast cancer is one cause that is often overlooked. Winged scapula can happen to any person who has had an axillary lymph node dissection as part of a mastectomy procedure.

Click “next” below to learn more about winged scapula.

Elizabeth Nelson is a wordsmith, an alumna of Aquinas College in Grand Rapids, a four-leaf-clover finder, and a grammar connoisseur. She has lived in west Michigan since age four but loves to travel to new (and old) places. In her free time, she. . . wait, what’s free time?
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