Congenital absence of the sternum in a neonate
Congenital absence of the sternum is a rare chest wall malformation resulting from the failure of midline fusion during embryonic development. It is a potentially life-threatening congenital midline defect. Only sporadic cases have been reported in literature. The abnormality can cause significant morbidity, and like other congenital anomalies can have associated defects. Repair of congenital absence of the sternum should ideally be undertaken in the neonatal period when the chest wall is highly compliant, and hence, primary closure can thus be achieved without significant cardiopulmonary compression. As the patient ages, chest wall compliance decreases and closure will become progressively difficult as venous return and lung compliance are increasingly compromised. We report a case of congenital absence of the sternum as it is very rare and because it was successfully operated in a neonate period.
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