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Polands Syndrome

  • Polands Syndrome
  • Polands Syndrome

Description of disability:

Poland syndrome is a sporadic congenital anomaly characterized by the absence of the sternal head of the pectoralis major muscle, along with hypoplasia and/or aplasia of the breast or nipple, with deficiency of the subcutaneous fat and axillary hair. There can be associated abnormalities of the rib cage and the ipsilateral upper extremity. In the hand and fingers, anomalies include symphalangism, syndactyly with hypoplasia, brachydactyly, or aplasia of the fingers. 

There may also be rib cage abnormalities, such as shortened ribs, and the ribs may be noticeable due to less fat under the skin (subcutaneous fat). Breast and nipple abnormalities may also occur, and underarm (axillary) hair is sometimes sparse or abnormally placed. In most cases, the abnormalities in the chest area do not cause health problems or affect movement. Poland syndrome most often affects the right side of the body, and occurs more often in males than in females.


The Poland syndrome malformations being morphological, correction by custom implant is a first-line treatment. This technique allows a wide variety of patients to be treated with good outcomes. Poland Syndrome can be associated with bones, subcutaneous and mammary atrophy: if the first, as for pectus excavatum, is successfully corrected by a custom implant, the others can require surgical intervention such as lipofilling or silicone breast implant, in a second operation.

The surgery takes place under general anaesthesia and lasts less than 1 hour. The surgeon prepares the locus to the size of the implant after performing an 8-cm axillary incision and inserts the implant beneath the skin. The closure is made in 2 planes.

The implant will replace the pectoralis major muscle, thus enabling the thorax to be symmetrical and, in women, the breast as well. If necessary, especially in the case of women, a second operation will complement the result by the implantation of a breast implant and / or lipofilling .

Post operative care: 

The surgical scar heals at 6-weeks post-operative, and fades within several months, according to the skin type of the woman. The patient usually resumes her normal life activities at about 1-week post-operative. The patient usually does not exercise or engage in strenuous physical activities for about 6 weeks. Moreover, during the initial convalescence, the patient is encouraged to regularly exercise (flex and move) her arms to alleviate pain and discomfort; and, as required, analgesics for alleviating pain.


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