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A normal trachea (windpipe) has many rings made of cartilage (a strong and flexible tissue). These rings are C-shaped and support the trachea but also allow it to move and flex when your child breathes.
Complete tracheal rings are a birth defect in these rings that causes them to be O-shaped instead of C-shaped. This can result in airway stenosis—an abnormal narrowing of your child’s windpipe. Mild cases may not require surgery. More severe cases can seriously interfere with breathing and require treatment.
The Center for Airway Disorders at Boston Children's Hospital is specifically designed to care for children with this rare condition. Our team provides the most advanced testing and surgical techniques available.
Complete tracheal rings are a birth defect in the cartilage that supports the airway. Normal cartilage rings are C-shaped. Complete tracheal rings are O-shaped, which can result in a narrowing of the airway (stenosis).
The number of rings in the trachea varies from 16-20. This defect in the cartilage can affect one or many of those rings.
This disorder can significantly impair your child’s ability to breath and requires immediate treatment.
We are grateful to have been ranked #1 on U.S. News & World Report's list of the best children's hospitals in the nation for the third year in a row, an honor we could not have achieved without the patients and families who inspire us to do our very best for them. Thanks to you, Boston Children's is a place where we can write the greatest children's stories ever told.”