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Yankees’ Phil Hughes to Have Circulatory Exam on Pitching Arm

New York Yankees pitcher Phil Hughes will see a medical specialist to determine if a blood-vessel condition is causing a lack of strength in his throwing arm.

Manager Joe Girardi said Hughes, a 24-year-old right-hander, will be examined by St. Louis-based Robert William Thompson, a specialist in Thoracic Outlet Syndrome. Hughes had seven hours of medical tests over two days in New York this week.

The condition Thompson will check for occurs when pressure constricts blood vessels traveling under the collarbone and atop the rib cage, according to the website of the National Institutes of Health. Symptoms include pain, numbness and tingling in the fingers, neck and shoulders and weakness in the hand muscles, according to the website.

Hughes, an 18-game winner for the Yankees a year ago, is 0-1 with a 13.94 earned run average this season. He has complained of weakness in his arm and shoulder since spring training and cut a practice session short this week when he told coaches his arm felt dead.

Girardi, speaking after last night’s 3-1 victory over the Chicago White Sox in New York, didn’t say how long Hughes might remain sidelined. The New York Times reported today that pitchers diagnosed with the syndrome have missed months and some never regained their pre-injury form.

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