Sydney Haje

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Sydney A. Haje (16 February 1952 – 26 June 2012) was a Brazilian orthopedist, known internationally for his pioneering work on chest wall deformities including the creation of a conservative treatment protocol for the pectus carinatum and pectus excavatum conditions. Sydney Haje_sentence_0

He also was the medical director of the Centro Clínico Orthopectus and Pediatric Orthopaedics instructor in Brasília, Brazil, and scientific and continuing medical education director of the Medical Association of Brasília (AMBr). Sydney Haje_sentence_1

Life and work Sydney Haje_section_0

Born in Anápolis in the state Goiás of Brazil in 1952, Haje moved to Brasília in 1969. Sydney Haje_sentence_2

He graduated in medicine in 1976 from the University of Brasília (UnB), performed his orthopedic residency at the Hospital Sarah, and completed a further specialization in physiatry. Sydney Haje_sentence_3

Starting in 1977, Haje developed the "dynamic remodeling method", a treatment of chest wall deformities pectus carinatum and pectus excavatum based on the use of compression braces in association with exercise protocols, and he continued working in this medical field for the next 35 years, treating close to 5.000 patients. Sydney Haje_sentence_4

He highlighted that here are time points at which patients should best be treated due to the decreasing flexibility of the thorax during the course of development, – with patients with pectus carinatum being best treated in childhood, and patients with pectus excavatum best treated in the growing period. Sydney Haje_sentence_5

He gave the first description of a case of iatrogenic pectus deformity due to the injury of these growth plates in connection with a cardiac operation in which a sternotomy was performed on the immature skeleton. Sydney Haje_sentence_6

During a fellowship in the United States, he pioneered the reproduction of pectus deformities in animal experiments, as a step towards understanding, preventing and treating pectus deformities. Sydney Haje_sentence_7

These experiments confirmed the presence of growth plates in the sternum and not, as previously described, sutures between sternal segments. Sydney Haje_sentence_8

At the Alfred I. duPont Institute, a pediatric orthopedic hospital in Wilmington, Delaware in the United States, he treated children and adolescents with different types of pectus deformities with a dynamic chest compressor orthosis. Sydney Haje_sentence_9

In 1995 Haje put in place a treatment program that allowed patients to receive his orthoses without cost in public hospitals in Brasília. Sydney Haje_sentence_10

Together with his co-workers, he also investigated the development of pectus deformities in relation to the growth of the sternum, using magnetic resonance image data in combination with radiographic data. Sydney Haje_sentence_11

After the Nuss procedure for pectus excavatum had drawn worldwide attention to the elasticity and malleability of the chest wall in children, several groups including that of Argentinian surgeon Marcelo Martinez-Ferro started working with pectus carinatum patients using compression braces. Sydney Haje_sentence_12

Until this time, except for the pioneer papers of Haje and coworkers, no other medical authors had supported a non-operative approach for the treatment of these patients. Sydney Haje_sentence_13

Haje taught and lectured in Brazil and internationally, including the United Kingdom, Argentina and Turkey. Sydney Haje_sentence_14

at the occasion of a lecture to be held by Haje at the Royal Society of Medicine in 2011, a spinal surgeon from the UK, David Harrison, introduced Haje's work by referring to it as "truly revolutionary" and "much more appropriate to the way in which we would like to treat pectus carinatum and excavatum deformities, something that we have not been able to do before", emphasizing also the psychosocial relevance of these conditions. Sydney Haje_sentence_15

Haje authored over 20 scientific publications and received seven awards for his studies. Sydney Haje_sentence_16

He died on 25 June 2012 of a heart attack. Sydney Haje_sentence_17

His work is continued by his son Davi P. Haje. Sydney Haje_sentence_18


Credits to the contents of this page go to the authors of the corresponding Wikipedia page: en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sydney Haje.