What is pectus carinatum?
Pectus (Latin: ‘chest’) carinatum (Latin: ‘keel’) is a deformity of the chest which causes the breastbone (sternum) to be pushed out. The condition is also known as ‘pigeon chest’ or ‘chicken breast’. It is less common than pectus excavatum, in which the sternum is pushed in or depressed. The prevalence is thought to be about 1 in 2,000 in the US population.
Researchers have not identified pectus carinatum causes, but it likely has a genetic component since as many as 1 in 4 patients have a family history of other affected relative. Pectus deformity occurs more frequently in males than females (4:1 ratio).
The pectus team at Children’s Mercy Kansas City are recognized leaders in treating chest wall deformities, and are one of the highest volume centers in the country.