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Nuss procedure in adult pectus excavatum: a simple artifice to reduce sternal tension.

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Cardiac Surgery Unit, Umberto I Hospital, Turin, Italy.


Nowadays the Nuss operation represents the standard surgical choice for pectus excavatum repair in children and teenagers. Some concerns have been raised regarding its applicability in adults, as compared with younger patients, in view of the higher rate of complications after surgery. We describe an easy trick that has been performed on a 36-year old man with a moderate pectus excavatum after an unsatisfactory Nuss procedure. It consisted of a T-shaped partial anterior sternotomy, performed after positioning of the stainless steel bar, in order to promote a hinge mechanism of the sternum to reduce the tension over the reinforcement. This procedure was successful with well-controlled postoperative pain and great patient satisfaction. No complications were recorded at 1-year follow-up. In our opinion, this simple trick could represent a valid surgical option for pectus excavatum repair in late adolescents and adults to obviate the occurrence of major sternal tension.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]
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