People with a condition called "Pectus Carinatum" are getting help for the deformity they used to only be able to hide.
Pectus Carinatum is caused by the abnormal growth of cartilage, which makes the breastbone protrude. It can be uncomfortable and also cause shortness of breath.
Surgery can correct it, but at Children's Mercy Hospital, patients like Billy Ferguson are undergoing a different kind of treatment called the Dynamic Compression System.
Billy wears a brace for 23 hours a day, which puts a little more than two pounds of pressure per square inch onto his chest, and should correct his problem in about six months.
Children's Mercy is the second hospital in the country to use the device. Physicians from Argentina came to Kansas City to visit and plan to fit 13 kids for the device while they are here.
Dr. Whit Holcomb from Children's Mercy Hospital says the patients are measured and the measurements are normally sent to Argentina, where the brace is made to fit. The pressure applied is unique to each patient and produces a little discomfort. Patients have to be careful to make sure the brace's plate does not damage their skin.
So far, Billy doesn't mind the discomfort because it will help his condition.
"It's just weird like in the locker room at school when you're changing in gym, you have the chest that goes out."
Dr. Holcomb says like a retainer after teeth braces, kids may need to use the brace occasionally so the breastbone won't begin to protrude again.
The device is approved by the Food and Drug Administration.