Poland Syndrome - Describe Your Experience

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What is Poland syndrome?

First described by the 19th-century British anatomist Sir Alfred Poland, Poland syndrome is a unique pattern of one-sided malformations that are present at birth (congenital malformations). Poland syndrome is noted for the underdevelopment or absence of the chest (pectoralis) muscles on one side of the body as well as webbing of the fingers (cutaneous syndactyly) on the hand of the same side (ipsilateral side) of the body.

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See what others are saying

Comment from: Marc, 45-54 Male (Patient) Published: August 17

I have Poland's syndrome. I first became aware of it when I was ten or so and it has caused a lot of issues. I had a botched operation at 19, and had another one a year ago. My right breast muscle was missing, I have a slightly smaller muscle on the top of my arm and I think there are other things wrong, like I may have a shorter right leg. Anyway, it was very bad for my confidence. Operations are better these days and plastic surgeons are more aware. I had a simple silicone implant put in, after an initial operation to put a saline bag in to stretch the skin. I would say I look maybe 70 percent better, and I feel much more confident, though not always.

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Comment from: (Patient) Published: April 06

I have Poland syndrome and first became aware of it at around five years of age. I've always been grateful to my family for not making it an issue in my younger years. I am missing the right pectoralis major which caused me to use my left arm for any functions that required added strength, such as in bowling or throwing a ball. While in high school I participated in varsity wrestling and football. I even had a 24 year career in the Navy, retiring as a Chief Petty Officer. Obviously, the absence of the pectoralis muscle didn't go unnoticed at the many physicals I went through. I will admit to being very self- conscious of my appearance but at this stage in life I have no intention of undergoing any cosmetic enhancements or corrections.

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