Upper sternal depression following Lorenz bar repair of pectus excavatum

Vanessa A. Olbrecht, Fizan Abdullah, Meghan A. Arnold, Rosemary Nabaweesi, David C. Chang, Kimberly H. McIltrot, Charles N. Paidas, Paul M. Colombani

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


An upper sternal depression following Lorenz bar repair of pectus excavatum (PE) represents a partial recurrence and poses a difficult problem for the surgeon. There is no published experience detailing the management options or best course of therapy for this complication. This study presents our institutional experience in treating eight patients with this specific subtype of recurrence and we discuss intraoperative considerations which aid in the identification and better management of this deformity. A retrospective review (1997-2006) of patients undergoing primary repair of PE with a Lorenz bar procedure identified eight patients who experienced upper sternal depression with the bar still in place following initial repair of PE. All patients were revised with the insertion of a second bar to elevate the upper sternal depression. Data collected for each patient included demographics, preoperative symptoms, operative characteristics, and postoperative outcomes. The mean age at the time of Lorenz bar repair and surgical revision was 20.8 ± 9.5 and 21.5 ± 10.1 years, respectively. A majority of patients (87.5%) were male. The mean time to reoperation was 23.8 ± 11.8 months. Following this second procedure, no patient has experienced bar displacement, recurrence of the upper sternal depression, or has required a third procedure. Our limited experience supports the use of a second Lorenz bar in the treatment of upper sternal depression after bar correction of a PE deformity. Appropriate recognition and treatment of this entity will advance patient outcomes and satisfaction after surgery for PE deformities.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)843-846
Number of pages4
JournalPediatric surgery international
Issue number7
StatePublished - Jul 1 2008


  • Chest wall
  • Pectus excavatum
  • Pediatric
  • Sternum
  • Surgery

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health
  • Surgery


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