Cervical rib

Last revised by Liz Silverstone on 30 Oct 2023

Cervical ribs are supernumerary or accessory ribs arising from the seventh cervical vertebra. They occur in ~0.5% of the population, are usually bilateral, but often asymmetric 2, and are more common in females.

Related pathology

Although cervical ribs are usually asymptomatic, they are the most important anatomic rib variant clinically, because they can cause thoracic outlet syndrome by compression of the brachial plexus or subclavian artery/vein.

Differential diagnosis

ADVERTISEMENT: Supporters see fewer/no ads

Updating… Please wait.

 Unable to process the form. Check for errors and try again.

 Thank you for updating your details.