Median arcuate ligament syndrome - Anxiety Support

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Median arcuate ligament syndrome


Dr. Hsu (a vascular surgeon in CT) diagnosed me with MALS and examined me for SMA as well. I want to talk about the symptoms anyone else has had with MALS because some of them are off the wall...

My symptoms are insteadiness and tremors, chest pain mid abdominal pain back pain (like my lower ribs are getting ripped off) abdominal gaurding, mild gastroperisis, gallbladder non functioning and removed. Super anxiety and throat feels like it's always closing up on me.

My MALS was diagnosed based on exclusion of tests as follows:

My Abdominal Ultrasound showed abnormalities of my liver and my gallbladder #1, My Gastric Emptying Study came back mildly delayed #2, a HIDA scan reveled that my Gallbladder was functioning at only 14% when it should be at about 60% #3 (Sadly it was removed), I'm unable to bend my core or rotate my core without severe nausea, anxiety and abdominal pain. If I did any of these activities that would disrupt the Celiac Artery my anxiety along with my digestive system would go nuts and I would purge all of my bowel contents. I don't get constipated very much; but, that was a question from Dr. Hsu for the condition SMA (which would produce severe gastroperisis and constipation).

Here are my solid symptoms:

•Epigastric pain

•Trouble Swallowing

•Abdominal tightness/rigidity

•Occasional Chest pain (Centered)

•Pain around bottom ribs

•Lack of energy

•Mild tremor



•Unintentional Weight loss

•Lack of appetite






•no sex drive

•Stool lacks smell

•Symptoms worse after strenuous activity involving compression or torsion of abdomen

•Severe symptoms are followed by immediate bowel purge and chills with low body temp.

•Intense Morning Cramps of Diaphram when laying on back after strenuous activity

If you were to consult a MALS expert or any vascular surgeon you would need to get the Abdominal Ultrasound, HIDA Scan, Gastric Emptying, Barium Swallow and nail down your symptoms that are constant. If you have varying symptoms that come and go, you need to focus only on the ones that are most frequent and specific.

4 Replies

You should continue to see a specialist who treats this condition. You might want to find someone at a university or teaching hospital, and carefully follow the treatment protocol you are given. I don't know anything about this condition, but it does sound potentially serious and certainly seems debilitating. Good luck.

Hidden in reply to b1b1b1

The worst part right now is the rib pain and the throat pain

This is very interesting! I started with most of my symptoms after pushing a couch. I had a ton of rib and chest pain. A lot has decreased with faithful appointment Las with my chiropractor. I’m going to research this. I’m glad you found some answers!

Hidden in reply to DeeM3

Thanks Dee,

I posted part of this on another forum and had someone asking me a bunch of questions about it, so I figured I'd regurgitate the info.

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