Often called “pigeon breast,” pectus carinatum is caused when the sternum (breastbone) is pushed outward. This often causes pain during exercise or during times of increased breathing.
Pectus carinatum occurs more often in males than females (4:1 ratio), and develops somewhat later in males than it does in females. It often increases in severity with age and generally worsens during growth spurts that occur during late childhood and adolescence.
Although pectus carinatum sometimes interferes with overall health, it generally does not interfere with heart and lung function.