Sternal elevation techniques during the minimally invasive repair of pectus excavatum.

Haecker, Frank-Martin; Krebs, Thomas; Kocher, Gregor; Schmid, Ralph; Sesia, Sergio Bruno (2019). Sternal elevation techniques during the minimally invasive repair of pectus excavatum. Interactive cardiovascular and thoracic surgery, 29(4), pp. 497-502. Oxford University Press 10.1093/icvts/ivz142

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The aim of the review was to evaluate the routine use of sternal elevation techniques (SETs) during minimally invasive repair of pectus excavatum (MIRPE, the Nuss procedure). We performed a review of the literature between January 1998 and September 2018 with focus on different methods of SET during MIRPE. Reported effects and side effects were evaluated and compared with our own experience concerning the routine use of the vacuum bell for sternal elevation during MIRPE during the last 13 years. SET is more often used in adult patients than in adolescents. SET improves visualization and safety of MIRPE. Advancement of the pectus introducer, retrosternal dissection and placement of the pectus bar are easier. The risk of cardial and/or pericardial lesion is reduced significantly. Different types of retractors, a crane combined with a wire and/or customized hooks are reported to be used as SET. Furthermore, routine use of a subxiphoid incision is reported. However, more technical equipment, and in some SETs additional incisions are necessary. In contrast, no additional skin incision is necessary for the vacuum bell. The routine intraoperative use of the vacuum bell was safe and effective in 131 patients. It facilitates the retrosternal dissection and the insertion of the pectus bar like other SETs. Besides a temporary mild hematoma, no relevant side effect was observed. In conclusion, an increasing number of authors report on the routine use of SET during MIRPE to improve safety of the procedure. We recommend the routine intraoperative use of the vacuum bell during MIRPE.

Item Type:

Journal Article (Review Article)


04 Faculty of Medicine > Department of Gastro-intestinal, Liver and Lung Disorders (DMLL) > Clinic of Thoracic Surgery
04 Faculty of Medicine > Pre-clinic Human Medicine > BioMedical Research (DBMR) > Forschungsbereich Mu50 > Forschungsgruppe Thoraxchirurgie

UniBE Contributor:

Kocher, Gregor; Schmid, Ralph and Sesia, Sergio Bruno


600 Technology > 610 Medicine & health




Oxford University Press




Thomas Michael Marti

Date Deposited:

11 Nov 2019 12:57

Last Modified:

11 Nov 2019 13:06

Publisher DOI:


PubMed ID:


Uncontrolled Keywords:

Intraoperative use Nuss procedure Sternal elevation Vacuum bell




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