Surgery to correct irregular sternum (Gap between breasts)? (Photos)

I am 21 years old, 5'0, 96lbs. Growing up, I have always noticed that my sternum is irregularly shaped. Unlike most women, who have an almost " ^ " shaped breast bone, mine is more " ∩ " shaped, as you can see in the photos. I believe that this is resulting in my wide set breasts. I would like to know if there is any surgery that can be done in order to correct this abnormality. I do not wish to get a breast augmentation unless it is my only option. Thank you!

Doctor Answers 9

Wide Sternal Space

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You may want to consider fat-grafting to subtly camouflage the area of concern. Breast implants could accentuate the space and separation of areolas.

You will need to meet with a board certified Plastic Surgeon in person to be examined and discuss your goals and options.

All the best

Surgery to correct irregular sternum

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I do not think that the issue of your sternum will be improved with an implant, even if the implant is placed above the muscle.

Julio Garcia, MD
Las Vegas Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 27 reviews

Surgery to correct irregular sternum (Gap between breasts)? (Photos)

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It seems you have what we call a "pectus excavatum".  There is an extensive surgical procedure to correct this that involves conspicuous scars and I would not recommend it in a young girl.  In the past we used to correct this with custom made silicone implants.  However, a more modern technique to correct this would be the use of your own fat in the form of fat transfer.  Of course, at 96 lbs, it is unlikely that you have enough fat for this purpose.  Your plastic surgeon would probably want you to gain some weight so that there will be fat available, and you probably will need it done 2-3 times because on the average around 30% of the fat will resorb.

Ruben B. Abrams, MD, FACS
Beverly Hills Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 19 reviews

Correction of irregularity between breasts

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Fat transfer to this area (likely a couple of rounds) would provide a nice permanent correction with minimal scarring or downtime. You do need to have adequate donor sites (areas that are ideal for a little liposuction). Each session will fill and soften the contours with about 50% of the fat staying and it can be hard to know up front exactly how many times it may need to be done before you are happy. You do look quite thin (lucky girl), so finding fat may be the tough part.

Stacey Folk, MD
Denver Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 25 reviews

Breast Surgery

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The only procedure to get the breast volumes closer together would be breast augmentation either with implants or with fat grafting. At your weight the fat transfer is generally not possible. With a well done breast augment you should be able to get the gap narrowed by about half.

Ronald V. DeMars, MD
Portland Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 29 reviews

Surgery to correct irregular sternum (Gap between breasts)?

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custom made prostheses can be manufactured to fill this area.  This will however be a surgical treatment and an implant.  Alternatively you may use fat injections as others have suggested.

Indented sternum - best treatment?

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Thank you for your question about your lower sternal shape.
  • To fill in the area, you can either have fat injections or a custom made soft silicone implant.
  • The fat injections will give you a nice look - but may need to be repeated from time to time.
  • Always see a Board Certified Plastic Surgeon.
Best wishes. Elizabeth Morgan MD PHD FACS

Improvement of a "wide" sternum

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The absence of significant tissue in the area between the breasts can be improved through fat transfers.  Fat can be harvested in on area of your body and then concentrated and transferred as a graft to the deficient sternum.  Depending upon the thickness of the existing tissue at the sternum, more than one session may be required.  Some of the fat will be absorbed, but a significant amount will establish a new blood supply and "take". The fat that remains will be your own living tissue and provide a significant improvement. 

Samuel Beran, MD
New York Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 8 reviews

Options for wide sternum

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Thank you for the question and photos.  There are some options for improving the appearance of a wide sternum including:
- fat transfer to the cleavage area
- breast augmentation with implants
- possible breast lift/shaping

If you have excess fat elsewhere, fat transfer may be a good option.  Second option would be breast augmentation with implants.  Sometimes with widely spaced breats, a breast shaping procedure can be of help but I do not think that is likely to be the case for you.

All the best,

Dr Remus Repta

Remus Repta, MD
Scottsdale Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 173 reviews

These answers are for educational purposes and should not be relied upon as a substitute for medical advice you may receive from your physician. If you have a medical emergency, please call 911. These answers do not constitute or initiate a patient/doctor relationship.