The Nuss Procedure
May 08, 2018
Dr. Donald Nuss
The Nuss Procedure

Some people come to Children's Hospital of The King's Daughters in search of something most of us take for granted: A deep breath.

Some people can be born with a chest deformity that cause their breastbone to press down on their lungs and heart. Many have been through multiple surgeries – as a young child and a teenager - to fix the bone, called the sternum. Sadly, many return to a life of fatigue, a chest that is sunken and such thin tissue across it that people can literally see their heart beat under their skin.

The medical term for the condition is pectus excavatum. Pectus excavatum, also known as sunken or funnel chest, is a congenital chest wall deformity in which several ribs and the sternum grow abnormally, producing a concave, or caved-in, appearance in the anterior chest wall.

The Nuss procedure is a minimally-invasive procedure, invented in 1987 by Dr. Donald Nuss for treating pectus excavatum. He developed it at Children's Hospital of The King's Daughters, in Norfolk, Virginia.