Pectus excavatum is a condition in which a person's breastbone is sunken into his or her chest. The chest bows inward instead of outward. In severe cases, pectus excavatum can look as if the center of the chest has been scooped out, leaving a deep dent.
While the sunken breastbone is often noticeable shortly after birth, the severity of pectus excavatum typically worsens during the adolescent growth spurt.
Also called funnel chest, pectus excavatum is more common in boys than in girls. Severe cases of pectus excavatum can eventually interfere with the function of the heart and lungs. But even mild cases of pectus excavatum can make children feel self-conscious about their appearance. Surgery can correct the deformity.
Apr. 15, 2011
- Boas SR. Skeletal diseases influencing pulmonary function. In: Kliegman RM. Nelson Textbook of Pediatrics. 18th ed. Philadelphia, Pa.: Saunders Elsevier; 2007. http://www.mdconsult.com/das/book/body/208746819-6/0/1608/0.html. Accessed Feb. 17, 2011.
- Tzelepis GE, et al. Pectus excavatum. In: Mason RJ, et al. Murray and Nadel's Textbook of Respiratory Medicine. 5th ed. Philadelphia, Pa.: Saunders Elsevier; 2010. http://www.mdconsult.com/das/book/body/192068760-2/0/1288/0.html. Accessed Feb. 17, 2011.
- Mayer OH. Pectus excavatum: Etiology and evaluation. http://www.uptodate.com/home/index.html. Accessed Feb. 17, 2011.
- Jaroszewski DE, et al. Current management of pectus excavatum: A review and update of therapy and treatment recommendations. Journal of the American Board of Family Medicine. 2010;23:230.
- Mayer OH. Pectus excavatum: Treatment. http://www.uptodate.com/home/index.html. Accessed Feb. 17, 2011.
- What is Marfan syndrome? National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute. http://www.nhlbi.nih.gov/health/dci/Diseases/mar/mar_whatis.html. Accessed Feb. 18, 2011.
- What is scoliosis? National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases. http://www.niams.nih.gov/Health_Info/Scoliosis/scoliosis_ff.asp. Accessed Feb. 18, 2011.
- What is mitral valve prolapse? National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute. http://www.nhlbi.nih.gov/health/dci/Diseases/mvp/mvp_whatis.html. Accessed Feb. 18, 2011.
- Sugarbaker DJ, et al. Chest wall deformities: Depression deformities (pectus excavatum). In: Townsend CM Jr, et al. Sabiston Textbook of Surgery: The Biological Basis of Modern Surgical Practice. 18th ed. Philadelphia, Pa.: Saunders Elsevier; 2008. http://www.mdconsult.com/das/book/body/208746819-6/0/1565/0.html. Accessed Feb. 22, 2011.
- Jaroszewski DE (expert opinion). Mayo Clinic, Scottsdale, Ariz. March 8, 2011.
- Kelly RE, et al. Twenty-one years of experience with minimally invasive repair of pectus excavatum by the Nuss procedure in 1215 patients. Annals of Surgery. 2010;252:1072.
- Nasr A, et al. Comparison of the Nuss and the Ravitch procedure for pectus excavatum repair: A meta-analysis. Journal of Pediatric Surgery. 2010;45:880.
- Coelho MS, et al. Pectus excavatum surgery: Sternochondroplasty versus Nuss procedure. Annals of Thoracic Surgery. 2009;88:1773.