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Pre and post operative care in the new surgical treatment of the Pectus Excavatum: Pectus Up

Preparation for surgery with Pectus Up Surgery Kit

There are some issues to be borne in mind before the patient undergoes a surgical treatment for Pectus Excavatum. As in all anesthetic surgery, this operation entails certain risks, which will be  properly explained by the surgeon. It is also necessary to take into account some warnings, of which the following two should be highlighted:

  • The patients should inform the surgeon of the medications they are taking since some of them could interfere with anesthesia or cause complications. Drugs like aspirin or ibuprofen can cause bleeding.
  • Tobacco contributes to the development of lung and heart problems, among others. It also hinders wound healing. The tissues require oxygen for proper healing and tobacco significantly reduces the amount that they receive.

Post-operative care after Pectus Excavatum surgery with Pectus Up



  • Patients must be careful with personal hygiene to avoid possible infections.
  • The wound cannot be touched or wet. In addition, the dressing should not be removed until the first examination by the surgeon.
  • It is not advisable to be in a lying position for a long time.
  • Patients should sleep on their back and avoid lying on their side overnight (at least for the first 3 months).
  • Patients should not adopt abnormal or rigid positions that can avoid pain beforehand but that can have consequences related to the bad position.
  • Patients must keep a good position of the torso and prevent to expose themselves to risky situations.
  • It is recommended to do deep breathing exercises several times a day.
  • Crowded environments, violent physical contacts and situations of risk must be avoided.
  • Relative rest must be taken during the first month. Ambulation and normal life, using a good position of the torso.
  • Patients can go to school, university or their usual work from the first examination by the surgeon, provided that they fell well and surgeon deems it appropriate.
  • Avoid doing torso rotations and lifting weights or carrying backpacks for at least the first month.
  • Resume sports activity three months after the surgery, although it will depend on the type of sports practice.
  • Refrain from sports that involve movement of the torso such as golf, swimming (basically backstroke and breaststroke), tennis, weightlifting such as bench press, etc., for a period of 6 months.
  • Avoid all high-risk and contact sports. Contact sports are not recommended for at least the first 6 months after implantation. Severe trauma to the anterior chest can cause severe intrathoracic injury.

In case of doubt, follow the surgeon’s criteria.


Rest time after the surgery:

The rest period is around one week after the surgery. Relative rest of an approximate duration of one month is strongly recommended.

This will consist of resuming the activities of daily life progressively, using a good posture, avoiding movements that cause pain, and refraining from sports activities.

Do not make sudden torso rotations, or lift weights or carry backpacks for at least this first month.

Refrain from any sports activity for 3 months after the surgery, including weight lifting.


Activities after the surgery:

  • Metallic fixation devices or thoracic implants in general are not capable of withstanding the activity levels or the loads that a normal and healthy chest wall does.
  • In the event of not following the instructions recommended by the surgeon, the Pectus Up may loosen, move or detach if it is subjected to bearing weights, loads or very intense activities, or if the patient suffers traumatic injuries to the thorax.
  • The activities that can be performed  will always depend on the evolution of each patient, bearing in mind that the recovery is so much faster the younger the person is.
  • Avoid doing torso rotations and lifting weights during the first month.
  • Avoid violent physical contact.
  • Patients can go to school, university or to the usual work from the first check-up with the surgeon, if the surgeon considers it appropriate and the patient feels well.
  • Any sporting activity may be performed, as long as high-risk sports or sports that involve movements of the torso such as golf, swimming (backstroke and breaststroke) or tennis are avoided for a period of six months, since they involve a wide movement of the torso. It will always depend on the consent of the surgeon.

Failure to follow postoperative instructions could lead to complications. See the complications section.


Activities during the first 15 days:

  • Perform gentle breathing exercises on a daily basis, such as gently inhaling until the chest is fully filled; then breathe out slowly until the lung is free of air.
  • You can move and raise your arms gradually, adapting to the new situation successively and continuously, without causing pain.



  • You can travel on vacation, as long as you keep a good trunk position and avoid exposing yourself to risky situations.
  • Do not lift or hold suitcases, or lift weights, for at least the first month.
  • Avoid environments with crowds of people.
  • It is advisable to carry a document from your surgeon indicating the presence of the metal implant in the thorax, as it can test positive on the metal detector.



The adverse effects that may appear after the operation are the following:

  • The implant or any of its components can be loosened, moved or broken.
  • Reactions due to sensitivity to metals or allergic reaction to the implant material.
  • Pain, discomfort or abnormal sensation due to the presence of the implanted device.
  • Skin irritation or wound infection.
  • General risks of surgery under general anesthesia (permanent injuries, death…)
  • Incomplete or inadequate correction of the deformity or its recurrence, before or after removal of the implant.
  • Implant removal due to any of the above points.


After the patient has undergone a Pectus Excavatum surgical treatment with the Pectus Up method, the implant will be removed between 3 and 5 years after the surgery.

All these recommendations are general and will always be subject to the discretion of the surgeon who performed the surgical intervention.

The decision to remove the implant will depend on the degree of involvement of the Pectus Excavatum suffered by the patient, the evolution and age, among other factors.

In any case, it will also depend on whether the patient has any discomfort or some type of skin perception at an aesthetic level, so the patient and the surgeon agree to the removal before or during this period.

If possible, the implant should not be removed before two years and a half after the surgery.

Once the implant is removed, patients can lead a normal life at the social, academic and professional levels.

See frequently asked questions.