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.
We 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:
– 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.