Can My Ribcage Be Narrowed?

Q: Dr. Eppley, Hi, I’m a 5’6 Trans woman who is interested in clavicle reduction/ overall shoulder narrowing. However, my main question is if you’d be able to reduce the size of my ribcage alongside this procedure?I know you’re able to re-section the lower ribs, but I was hoping you’d be able to reduce the width and overall size of the mid/top ribs too? I just think if that were a possibility, it’d change my life drastically and would go great with the shoulder reduction surgery.I just feel really bulky and large for my height, and I’d love more than anything to have a smaller ribcage.

A: Thank you for your inquiry and sending your pictures. In answer to your ribcage narrowing question,  there is no safe method to reduce the overall width of the fixed ribcage above the level of rib 10. If there was a way that it could be done I would be doing it. Unlike the lower ribs the rest of the ribs play an important role in respiration and their circumferential support can not be lost at more than one rib level.

Dr. Barry Eppley

World-Renowned Plastic Surgeon