15 Nov

Redefining orthosis bracing options in the treatment of pectus carinatum

Redefining orthosis bracing options in the treatment of pectus carinatum Redefining orthosis bracing options in the treatment of pectus carinatum
Originally, the Steeper Compressor Brace was developed by our clinical specialist orthotists in collaboration with the thoracic surgeons at the Leeds General Infirmary. The aim was to manufacture a clinically effective brace which is comfortable and acceptable to the patient. Nationally, referrals for orthotic treatment for pectus carinatum vary. Internationally, this is recognised as the first line of treatment for the condition and the team at Steeper are pro-actively working to change clinical practice in the UK to reflect international, and evidence-based practice.

Product benefits of the Steeper Compressor Brace
  • The brace is lightweight and comfortable and is easily adjustable without the need for full workshop facilities.
  • It can be manufactured from a cast or a 3D scan of the patient also increasing the availability in orthotic clinics with limited resources.
  • The brace is able to “grow” with an adjustable plate at the back of the brace which is beneficial during the rapid growth of adolescents in which males see a rapid expansion of their thorax.
  • It is supplied with a variety of pads that extend the life of the brace. This is especially important when patients are travelling great distances to come for treatment.
  • The anterior pad is movable which is particularly important in asymmetrical pectus deformities as it allows the deformity to be “chased” as it moves to a more central position with correction.
  • The brace has been successful in the management of pectus carinatum in males, but also in the hard to treat female population.
  • These design features ensure that the Steeper Compressor Brace offers value for money to the NHS, both with a successful orthotic treatment for the condition but also by reducing the rates of surgery for pectus carinatum.
Patient review
 “The treatment was definitely the best route I could have taken, as I didn’t want to risk surgery or end up with a large scar on my chest. I am very happy that with Kate at Steeper Clinic’s help, my treatment is complete and I am more confident in my own body than I have ever been.” Gemma Brayshaw
The story
Aged 9, a small lump developed on Gemma’s chest. Minor at this stage, it wasn’t until she grew older that it became more painful. Conscious of her chest, she became increasingly shy and wouldn’t wear certain types of clothing or feel comfortable getting changed for P.E. in front of others. As a result, she would often miss school. At 11 years old, Gemma was diagnosed with pectus carinatum. After speaking to the doctor at the hospital, Gemma was saddened to understand that the only treatment route for her would be surgery when she was 18. Disheartened that she would have to endure the pain and visual appearance of her chest throughout her teenage years, Gemma undertook research of her own and it was online that she found that bracing treatment may be an option for her. Taking her findings to her doctor, Gemma was referred to a specialist and whilst the doctor agreed it was an option, he was concerned that the brace would be painful, and Gemma would be putting herself through discomfort for a cosmetic fix.
The solution
Determined that she didn’t want to wait four more years for surgery, Gemma’s mum contacted Steeper Clinic and made an appointment. Travelling to Leeds, Gemma was excited and unwavering in the fact that the treatment was going to be a success. For her it wasn’t just a cosmetic problem, it made her feel very self-conscious and was something that she wanted to resolve.
Developed by clinical specialist orthotists at Steeper, the Steeper Compressor Brace is lightweight, comfortable and easily adjustable. The brace is designed to “grow” with an adjustable plate at the back of the brace; beneficial during the rapid growth of adolescents. This brace is designed to accommodate the more difficult-to-treat female population for pectus carinatum and whilst can be painful, results often surpass patient expectations. 
In Gemma’s case, the first couple of months were tough, it was very painful but after getting used to the Steeper Compressor Brace the pain reduced and the benefits were clear to see.
The turning point
Aged 17 and after 6 years of doctors’ appointments, Gemma has finally managed to treat her pectus carinatum and is happy that the treatment is now finally over. The brace has had the desired effect she so desperately wanted, it has given Gemma confidence in her appearance, improved her mental well-being and eliminated her chest pain. Consequently, her attendance at school has improved and she is looking forward to continuing her education.
For more information on the Steeper Chest Compressor Brace please click here. For enquiries into treatment please contact Steeper Clinic on 0113 207 0432 or e-mail enquiries@steeperclinic.com.