What Is a Chest Wall Deformity?

The chest wall is the structure made up of your ribs, sternum (or breastbone), cartilage, and other tissues. It provides protection for vital organs like the heart and lungs. The chest wall also plays an important role in your breathing and the movement of your shoulders and arms.

There are two basic types of chest wall deformities:

    1. pigeon breast (pectus carinatum), where the breastbone is pushed outward, and
    2. funnel chest (pectus excavatum), which is when the breastbone curves inward.

The causes of chest wall deformities are mostly unknown, but could be linked to genetic history because there are enough cases to suggest genes could contribute. These conditions can also range from mild to severe, potentially causing discomfort, pain, shortness of breath, or low self-esteem in your child.

Specialists with the Utah Pectus Program have extensive experience diagnosing and performing chest wall reconstructions to correct these conditions. We can help you determine what approach is best suited for your child's needs. Learn more about the possible treatment options or contact us to set up an appointment.

Types of Chest Wall Deformities