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Psychological support for patients with Pectus Excavatum

Psychological symptoms of Pectus Excavatum:

The family plays a key role in knowing whether or not the child accepts or rejects the pathology. It is important to assess if psychological support is required.

Being affected by Pectus Excavatum may affect the child’s social relationships and and having this attention and support will be vital for them to have a life with fully-formed social and personal relationships.

It is vital that the family provide this support but, on occasion, the support of a healthcare professional and/or psychologist may be necessary.

A study into psychosocial problems related to Pectus Excavatum. University of Navarre

apoyopsicoWe have already mentioned the importance of psychological support for patients with Pectus Excavatum. We must be aware of this, particularly with adolescents or paediatric age children, and, if necessary, find a professional who can help them

In a study undertaken by the University of Navarre, where 13 articles linked to psychosocial problems that may present in these patients were examined, the following conclusions were drawn:


  1. Psychological symptoms with Pectus Excavatum: Virtually all the patients with Pectus Excavatum (95%) suffer from some form of psychosocial symptom.
  2. Patients with Pectus Excavatum who suffer a psychosocial symptom have a lower quality of life than healthy youngsters of the same age.
  3. The quality of life improved significantly in over 80% of patients after the surgery.
  4. These results are true for both paediatric and adult patients.
  5. Quality of life is improved no matter the type of surgery.



– The only patients operated on are those with physical symptoms, though the primary motivator for these patients to have the procedure is the psychological symptoms.

– These psychological problems are very frequent and greatly affect quality of life; they improve significantly following reconstructive surgery.

– Serious thought needs to be given to including new surgical indication criteria for Pectus Excavatum which accounts for a psychiatric/psychological assessment of the patient as a direct indicator.

– The objective of the treatment should change from being the ‘functional restoration’ to ‘the full physical and mental restoration’ of the patient.

Source: http://www.unav.edu/documents/29044/6293880/tt3-p2.pdf