Is Subcostal Rib Shaving Safe?

Q: Dr. Eppley, I came across your practice online while researching rib anomaly correction surgery. I have always been self conscious of my rib cage and was hoping to gather some information of surgical options. I saw on your website that you’ve done some rib shaving to reduce the flare. I would like to learn more about the safety of such a procedure, how commonly you perform these procedures, and what would be a realistic expectation for aesthetic improvement. 

A: Thank you for your inquiry and sending your picture. I have done numerous subcostal rib shaving reduction procedures which is the protrusion you are demonstrating in your picture. This is a procedure that is very safe and effective and, in some cases, it is simply better to remove in its entirety rib #8 which is the main cause of the flare. Despite its safety and effectiveness the incision used to do the procedure is in a prominent area. I have always considered the scar a questionable aesthetic tradeoff in a young female in such a visible area.

Dr. Barry Eppley

Indianapolis, Indiana