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n Cardiovascular Journal of Africa - Clinical experience of repair of pectus excavatum and carinatum deformities
Background: We present the results of surgical correction of pectus excavatum (PE) and pectus carinatum (PC) deformities in adults, and also report a new method of sternal support used in surgery for PE deformities.
Methods: We present the results of 77 patients between the ages of 10 and 29 years (mean 17) with PE (n = 46) or PC (n = 31) deformities undergoing corrective surgery from 2004 to 2011, using the Ravitch repair method. Symptoms of the patients included chest pain (15%) and tachycardia (8%). Three patients underwent repair of recurrent surgical conditions.
Results: All of the patients with dyspnoea with exercise experienced marked improvement at five months post operation. Complications included pneumothorax in 5.1% (n = 4), haemothorax in 2.6% (n = 2), chest discomfort in 57% (n = 44), pleural effusion in 2.6% (n = 2), and sternal hypertrophic scar in 27% (n = 21) of patients. Mean hospitalisation was eight days. Pain was mild and intravenous analgesics were used for a mean of four days. There were no deaths. Results after surgical correction were very good or excellent in 62 patients (80%) at a mean follow up of three years. Three patients had recurrent PE and were repaired with the Nuss procedure. In three patients who underwent the Ravitch procedure, a stainless steel bar was used for sternal support instead of Kirschner wire.
Conclusions: Pectus deformities may be repaired with no mortality, low morbidity, very good cosmetic results and improvement in cardiological and respiratory symptoms.
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