Category Archives: Pectus Excavatum

What kind of doctor do I see for my Pectus?

Pectus excavatum (PE) is a chest wall deformity that can present with physical or psychosocial symptoms, or none at all. So which physician should you see if you have questions about your Pectus? If it’s your first time, start with a primary care physician, whether that’s a pediatrician or a general internal or family medicine… Read More »

Safety of Nuss versus Ravitch procedures

This is a very difficult question to answer, but one of the most common. The overall conclusion of a few studies is that they appear to be very similar with respect to complication rates. The best we can do is look to several recent journal articles investigating this question. However, it is very important to… Read More »

When should I start bringing my child to specialists?

Pectus excavatum (PE) can present at birth or even in utero. One of the most common questions for parents with children affected by PE is, “When should I start seeking medical attention for my son/daughter?” There are three main points to keep in mind related to this topic: First of all, as a rule of… Read More »

Nuss Procedure Steps

The Nuss Procedure is the most common form of treatment for Pectus Excavatum. It involves inserting a metal bar (or multiple bars) into the chest. A few years later, the bars are removed. The Nuss Procedure can vary depending on the surgeon, but the basic steps hold true for most institutions. Nuss Procedure Steps Anesthesia… Read More »

What causes Pectus Excavatum?

There is currently no known cause of Pectus Excavatum (PE). Several ideas have been hypothesized, but none are fully supported by data: 1. Intrauterine compression, rickets, pulmonary restriction, diaphragm alterations resulting in posterior traction on the sternum, and failure of osteogenesis or chondrogenesis. 2. Overgrowth of costal cartilage (this is the current prevailing theory). Even… Read More »

Most severe Haller Index possible

The Haller index is the current gold standard for defining the severity of Pectus Excavatum. It is calculated by CT scan. At the deepest point of the indent, the width of the chest wall and the depth of the indent is measured. Then, a ratio of the width to the depth is calculated, and gives… Read More »