Dynamic compression system for the correction of pectus carinatum

Semin Pediatr Surg. 2008 Aug;17(3):194-200. doi: 10.1053/j.sempedsurg.2008.03.008.


Between April 2001 and 2007, we treated 208 patients with pectus carinatum by using a specially designed dynamic compression system (DCS) that uses a custom-made aluminum brace. Recently, an electronic pressure measuring device was added to the brace. Results were evaluated by using a double-blinded subjective scale (1 to 10). A total of 208 patients were treated over 6 years; 154 were males (74%) and the mean age was 12.5 years (range 3 to 18 years). Mean utilization time was 7.2 hours daily for 7 months (range 3 to 20 months). A total of 28 (13.4%) patients abandoned treatment and were not evaluated for final results. Of the 180 remaining patients, 112 completed treatment. A total of 99 of 112 (88.4%) had good to excellent results scoring between 7 and 10 points, and 13 (11.6%) patients scored 1 to 6 points and were judged as poor or failed results. The "Pressure for Initial Correction" (PIC) in pounds per square inch (PSI) proved that starting treatment with less than 2.5 PSI avoids skin lesions. Patients who require pressures higher than 7.5 PSI should not be treated with this method. We found a good correlation between PIC versus treatment duration and outcome. DCS is an effective treatment for pectus carinatum with minimal morbidity. We suggest that patients with pectus carinatum have a trial of compression therapy before recommending surgical resection. The use of pressure measurement avoids complications such as skin lesions, partial or poor results, and patient noncompliance.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Braces*
  • Child
  • Child, Preschool
  • Cohort Studies
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Musculoskeletal Abnormalities / pathology
  • Musculoskeletal Abnormalities / therapy*
  • Pressure*
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Thoracic Wall / abnormalities*
  • Treatment Outcome