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Video

Voiceover:
24-year-old Paul came to see Pixie, suffering from Poland’s Syndrome, where one of his chest muscles is missing. He’s been referred to see Dr Yannis Alexandrides about the option to give him a perfect pec.

Dr Alexandrides:
We have two, uh, main solutions here. The first one is a permanent solution, made of silicone, we will insert it under your skin to give the impression of a muscle.

Voiceover:
But there’s a less intrusive alternative to an implant for Paul, which will give him a quicker result. And that’s to use a cosmetic filler called Macrolane, which will last between 18 and 24 months.

Dr Alexandrides:
The material is made of hyaluronic acid, it’s a substance that is found in our own skin, so it’s a natural substance, and we inject enough volume in the gap to create the volume that we need to match the difference. The advantage of this procedure is that it is done under local anaesthetic, so you don’t need to go to sleep, and it takes approximately an hour. And within a week, you will feel healthy enough to go back to all your activities.

Voiceover:
A couple of weeks later, and Paul is back to see Dr Alexandrides, and has decided that the less-invasive temporary procedure should be his first option.

Dr Alexandrides:
So I’m going to use two points of entry, one will be here and one will be here, and a third one might be here. They’re all very small, okay? So the pectoralis muscle is attached to this part of the thoracic wall…the lower part of it is completely gone. It’s only the upper muscle that is in existence on this side. When you compare it to the other side of the chest, you’ll see that the thoracic wall is smooth and round. But here, it created this concavity, that starts right here and it’s all the way to here. So what I will be doing, I will be focusing to fill in the concavity with the hyaluronic acid.

Voiceover:
Dr Alexandrides starts by numbing the area with a local anaesthetic…

Dr Alexandrides:
We want to inject the anaesthetic into the whole area we’re going to be injecting, so the whole area is completely numb. I’m using this large needle, it allows me to do this job faster and uh, with less patient discomfort, because if I didn’t have this big needle, I would have, I would need to do multiple injections in the skin.

Voiceover:
...and then begins to insert the filler using a special needle.

Dr Alexandrides:
So yeah, this is a special needle, it has a flat tip, and it has the injection part underneath. So that means that the first part of the needle spreads the area where the material will go, and then the material comes from the back so it spreads evenly, so it’s really the best kind for this approach. So I feel with my left hand, and the right one to actually do the injection, so I make sure that this is evenly distributed under the skin. Okay, so we’re doing very well. What I’m going to be doing at this point is massage it a little bit, so make it more even.

Voiceover:
Halfway through the operation, and Dr Alexandrides is carefully comparing the two sides of Paul’s chest, to make sure that they’re even.

Dr Alexandrides:
This is a good spot to really assess the result, because you can compare with the other side. So obviously my aim is to create a symmetric result, so I’m comparing all the points of the pectoralis muscle, and as I said, right now there’s still a little bit of gap created here that I need to fill, but the lower part is looking good. So we need to focus it here. So now we’d like to see you sitting up, so slowly…

Voiceover:
After about an hour, the procedure is complete, but it’ll be a few days before the swelling goes down and Paul will be able to see the impact of the filler.

Voiceover:
A week later, and now Paul is back to the clinic to reveal the results to Dr Pixie.

Dr Pixie:
Hi Paul, how’re you doing, take a seat there.

Paul:
How’re you doing.

Dr Pixie:
Nice to see you. Paul, if you want to slip your jumper off and show me what’s happened and show me the difference between how it was the last time.

Paul:
Yeah.

Dr Pixie:
You’ve got a little bit of bruising here now, so is this uncomfortable?

Paul:
No, it’s fine.

Dr Pixie:
Are you pleased with the result when you look in the mirror?

Paul:
Yeah, I’m very pleased, yeah. It’s been like that for so long, so I don’t know, now they look perfect.

Dr Pixie:
And what are you looking forward to doing now that you maybe would never have considered doing, say, last year?

Paul:
I’m looking forward to, uh, taking my daughter swimming, which I wouldn’t have been able to do, and um, going on my honeymoon, I’ll be looking forward to that, going to the beach.

Dr Pixie:
Fantastic. Good. And you’ve never done that before.

Paul:
No, no, I shied away.

Dr Pixie:
Thank you very much for coming back to see me, and hopefully things will continue to improve. Best of luck with everything.

Paul:
Thank you.

Dr Pixie:
And I’ll leave you to get dressed.

Read the video transcript

24 year old Paul came to see Dr Pixie because he had never developed pectoral muscles on the right hand side of his body, leaving him with a peculiar chest appearance. Dr Pixie diagnoses Poland’s Syndrome a rare condition more commonly affecting males. The main symptoms of the condition are purely cosmetic so Paul goes to see cosmetic surgeon Dr Yannis Alexandrides. After discussion with Dr Alexandrides Paul opted for a temporary but less invasive solution to surgery which involved injecting a cosmetic filler into the affected side of the chest to give the illusion of chest muscle. After the swelling had gone down Paul returned to Dr Pixie to show off his newly acquired pec.

Patient Name: Paul Darroch
Condition: Poland’s Syndrome
Specialist: Dr Yannis Alexandrides, Plastic Surgeon
Clinic: 111 Harley Street
Length of procedure: Approx 1 hour

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Comments and Questions

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Hi im a 34 year old male just found out by looking on net of my condition. I have an underdevelopt right pec and deformity to right hand mosr of the time doesnt. Bother me but sometimes can get me down girlfriend and mates are fab and tell me that they dont notice does anyone know of any links for surgery with costings plz





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I am a 40 old male. I am missing my left pectoral muscle and nipple. I found out I had ps when I was 22 but the doctors left it at that as they said nothing could be done. To be honest I had a rough time at school as I felt like the freak, but never allowed myself to get bullied. The old "one tit" comments behind my back made me angry but I Rose above it. Since the school years I've led a perfectly normal life, I got married at 25 and have 2 kids. It has never bothered my wife, or previous girlfreinds. Physically ps has NEVER stopped me from anything other than beach posing or swimming at busy pools😊 I did ta, martial arts, done labour intensive jobs etc. I am active and ps does not really hinder my strength on the left side that much although press ups are a challenge 😆. Ps for me is more a mental challenge than a physical one. My deepest respect goes to you all. Stay strong. Like my wife says "it's what makes you the special person you are".





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Im 30 and sick of having PS it makes me look skinny,its driving me mad. I have read other mens comments but all seem to only have iton one side of the chest.mine is both sides.where or who do i get in contact with about the tempry fix? I really cant handle haveing it anymore it is ruining my life. I have never been able to take my kids swimming or even take my top off on a really hot day down the beech.anybody know how to get it fixed pls leave some details i woukd be very greatfull.





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Hi, I'm trying to gather a bunch of us who have Polland Syndrome together and have a support group. Please let me know if you're interested! We all need to be heard! Our story is all unique in it's own way, differently from everyone else. Let's make our prints in the world and take the next step to be notice in a positive way!





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Hiya hun i'd be interested, i have never met anyone else that has poland syndrome. I am missing the pectoral muscle on my left hand side. It was embarrassing and i didn't know what it was as the NHS just kept passing the buck and telling me they couldn't help me as it was just cosmetic and never looked any further into it. I felt like a freak, i had one breast that stayed an A cup and my right breast grew as normal. I had to go to the Cancer unit to get "chicken fillets" from the age of 13. I felt like a fraud as i was surrounded by women who had been through the ordeal of breast cancer and mastectomies, and they saw me and said awww and gave me a sad look as they thought i was there for the same reason they where and i was only young. I felt aweful having to go back every few months to get new ones. Each time also having to get the next size up to even them out as my right breast continued to grow. I finished developing and my right breast got to a DD. I kept going along every 6 months to get new chicken fillets up until i was 21 years old, i managed to keep my deformaty hidden from the rest of the world except for family members. Living with it every day almost killed me, depression, anxiety and insecurites consumed my life. It affected me being able to persue normal relationships as i always had to stay covered up, with constant fear of anyone finding out. One boyfriend did find out and quickly dumped me, which then confirmed to me that i was a freak and that i couldn't trust anyone with my secret. At my lowest i did try to take my own life a few times. Looking back on it now i think how silly it was, but at the time i hated myself so much i couldn't see the light at the end of the tunnel, and with doctors and the NHS ignoring my cries for help i saw no other way of stopping the emotional pain. My nan then thankfully offered me a life line, she offered to pay for me to go private and have a breast augmentation. As soon as i showed the plastic surgeon my chest, he informed me that i had Poland Syndrome, I was so shocked, i finally had a name to put to the deformality that had taken over my life for the past 8 years. After researching it, i realised i was actually one of the lucky ones as, as far as i know that is the only part of me that was affected by the syndrome. Although i do have a few other issues and am now in the process of researching to see if any of them are anything to do with the sydrome. I have good news though, as soon as i had the opperation i was a new woman, well i was the young woman i would have been without the Poland Syndrome. I know had confidence and for the first time in my life i didn't have to hide away incase somebody found out about my secret. 5 Months after my opperation i met Danny and we fell in love, we have now been together for 8 years and have been happily married for 2 years. The 8 years where Poland Syndrome controlled my entire life has faded away and is now ancient history. It will always be a part of me but it no longer controls my life or affects the way i see myself.

Wow! What a story! Some of the things you had mentioned I'm unfamiliar with. When you say "chicken fillets" what does that mean? Never heard of such a thing. But then again what have I heard about Pollands? When I was 17 I went to shriners hospital up in Tampa Florida to see about doing surgery to fix my chest. The had told me that it would take three procedures to fully finish my chest. I was FRIGHTEN!! I couldn't face that at such a young age. I also am not one who's likes to do with pain. So my 18th birthday my mother kept saying "honey, this is your last year to decide on your surgery" (being shriners hospital would've done it for free) but never could I face it. They told me I would have massive scars both across and up and down my chest, I also would've lost my nipple. So I came to the realization I'm am who I am and whomever wants to love me will have to except all of me! Here I am 26 years old and still wonder what life would've been like if I was "normal" I went through absolute h*** with finding friends and even boyfriends. Fake friends would find out and then tell everyone which caused me to get bullied tremendously. When I dated a guy I NEVER would take off my shirt. Half of them were truly clueless for most of the time we dated. But mostly all were excepting of me! Now I'm married and have a very loving husband who's excepting of all of me! I just want so badly for us to be heard, those of us with our condition. We are unique individuals who could easily paint a beautiful picture to this world of ours.

My boyfriend is missing one of his upper chest muscles, I'm not sure if it's poland's syndrome or not, but it looks pretty similar to that. And honestly, I don't think it's embarrassing. I love him just how he is and I think it gives him a unique character. It doesn't cause him any pain and he flaunts it and is proud of it.





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That's a wonderful thing, to accept a person for who he/she is, not how they are built, ..we are all unique individuals, ..with NO say in how we developed! I just became gramma to a brand new baby boy, with Polands, ..I'm sad about it, I don't want to see him suffer because of it, ..he is such a beautiful baby, ..so sweet, no clue that he has a slightly abnormal development, ..missing 1 nipple and chest muscle, part of a rib. I never knew about this syndrome, until he was born,..God BLESS each and every person who has suffered and dealt with this condidtion!!!

Our 46 year old son has Poland's Syndrome. When we noticed a difference in his chest, we mentioned it to the pediatrician, who did not seem concerned. After consulting the March of Dimes, who put a name to it, we took him to a Dr. in Nashville, TN, who told us he could do anything anyone else could, and he would not recommend surgery. At this time he was around 14. He does not have some of the other symptoms of Poland's. This still bothers him, not just emotionally but physically as well. Is there help available for him? He has seen a chiropractor in the past, but things did not work out.





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Hi, I had never developed pectoral muscles on the right hand side of my body. i am very shy to show my body infront of my friends. please tell me some suggestions to overcome this problem. I'm 24 years old guy. please tell me how much that operation cost? and is it effect when i did excercise after surgery. please help me with ur responce. i'll really appreciate your responce.





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Hi my son has been diagnosed with polands sydrome.. I have been reading these posts but nothing I feel the same as my son who is currently only 1.. I was actually the one who pointed ou to the genetics he was seeing the possibility of polands sydrome I just wondered if any one else has the same symtoms my son is affected on the left hand side of his body he has a shorter arm less muscle in his arm smaller hand stumps for fingers and half a thumb ( no join in thumb) only 2 of his stumps have a small bone in them he is also missing his middle nuckel, his chest is only slightly affected. They have also pointed out that my son eye and ear is slightly smaller on the affected side. My son also suffers with hirshsprung desise. Any comments idears would be really helpful as I can't help but shake the feeling that polands is not the cause I just don't think try no what is wrong with my son and I'm getting the brush off mayb not but even on any medical records I see of my sons polands is always followed by a ? . Thanks for taking your time to read this x





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I am a female my right arm/ hand is missing large bone in arm and right thumb bone i had to have my wrist fused shut cause it was floppy my right breast is a (d) while my left is an ( a) i limp on right side leg with pain in back and lower buttocks and my right leg goes numb and tingles and burns all the time my right eye is smaller and i dont know if its my age im 40 or just the deformities but i ache all the time god bless you all and im interested if any more female my have this

My son is now five and after a year of not knowing what was wrong he was diagnosed with Polands. He has no pec muscle on his right side as well as a shorter arm and very small hand....his fingers were webbed at birth but we have since had surgery to separate. This had helpped my son with movement a little. I never knew anything about this birth defect for the first year of his life. He is coming to an age where his starting to ask questions. Its very upsetting. I am always possitive with him and i do understand there are people much worse off. I would like to find other parents going through the same as me. I tend to just get on with it and hope all will be ok and my son with be strong enough to deal with his difference! Its other kids i worry about. Support neeeded.

I am 32 year's old and I have polands syndrome, I would not say that I am a sufferer though as I still live a normal life. I have climbed kilimanjaro for charity and ran marathons amongst other things. I work as a chef and like to think I'm good at it. I have no right pectoral muscle and my left hand is bigger than my right, its a cool party trick that I love showing people. I do count myself lucky as there are far worse off people than me.





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Hi Im a 26 year old female. I have no breast at all, missing pectoral muscle and also have missing ribs. i was lucky enough to not get effected with my hands. But I will say that my whole right side where my pollands is, is sized differently. Not a huge notice but I noticed it with age. My right leg is slightly smaller, my butt cheek is smaller (oddly) and my arm is skinnier. I have yet to find a doctor to help me! I don't know anything about what future holds. I wanna have children but don't know if I will be considered "high risk" cause of the pollands? I'm trying to start a support group. Would you be interested in helping and letting your voice be heard?

Hi all I am Michel I have 43 , 6 months ago I started a plan of body transformation diet and fitness , I had neglected much recent years a bit discouraged by my condition, and the lack of professional help or guidance in my area, I seek to define / tone my muscles in the area to the next, making a sort of muscular inventory and from there make decisions regarding solid implants , fat injections, etc., which are overpriced , precisely in this work training last week suffered a torn tendon bicpes arm on the affected side and did not know before that hypotrophy , although my case is minimal, my entire adolescence countered mile swim in something that hides managed asymmetry, my case is only on the subject of the pectoralis major . I am convinced that this should be a public health issue in each of our countries that not only is the aesthetic / cosmetic field but transgresses other fields of the being of each of the affected and I have faith that here i could find the help i need to improve my quality of life and then share the experience with other affected.





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Hi mate Iv been training for 4 years with PS and I'm now 19. I only tend to hit chest as a secondary muscle group like on close grip bench press or close grip press ups: keep the reps at 15-20 to build tone and not size on the chest. Iv found I got a lot of injuries in the shoulder, just keep the bicep stretched off. Also the effected side doesn't grow as big like my left arm is 16 inches yet my effect right side is about 15 and a half. Keep training bro!


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