Navigation Links
Marked improvement in body image, physical stamina, post-surgical pectus patients report

Patients who have had the common chest wall deformity known as pectus excavatum corrected report improved body image and ability to exercise, according to a study published December in the journal Pediatrics.

The study, conducted at 11 North American hospitals, involved telephone interviews of more than 200 patients between the ages of 8 and 21 who had pectus excavatum surgery. Researchers interviewed parents as well.

The results were dramatic. Patients reported greatly improved body image and marked decrease in problems with exercise.

"These results should prompt physicians to consider both the emotional and physical implications of correcting pectus excavatum," said lead author Robert Kelly, M.D., a pediatric surgeon at Children's Hospital of The King's Daughters and Professor of Clinical Surgery and Pediatrics at Eastern Virginia Medical School in Norfolk, Va. "For too long, many in the medical community dismissed pectus excavatum as a merely cosmetic issue, but correcting pectus excavatum has concrete physical and psychological benefits."

Pectus excavatum is the most common congenital deformity of the chest wall. Its defining feature is a depression, or indentation of the chest wall.

In the late 1980s, King's Daughters surgeon Donald Nuss developed a minimally invasive technique to correct pectus excavatum that has since been widely adopted. King's Daughters remains a major training site for surgeons and a center for research on chest wall deformities.

"In Norfolk, we've performed the Nuss Procedure on more than 1,000 patients," says Kelly. "Having such a large population of patients helped us detect a trend. In patient after patient, it was as if surgery turned a light on inside. They seemed much more confident and outgoing after surgery than they did before."

After hearing similar anecdotal evidence from other facilities, surgeons enlisted the help of psychologist Thomas Cash, Ph.D., one of the nation's top researchers on body image issues, to help design a study that would determine whether the trend surgeons noted would hold up to scientific scrutiny.

Other hospitals participating in the study were: All Children's Hospital, St. Petersburg, Fla.; Boston Children's Hospital; Children's Hospital of Wisconsin, Milwaukee, Wisc.; Children's Medical Center, Dallas, Tx.; Children's Mercy Hospital, Kansas City, Mo.; Cincinnati Children's Hospital Medical Center; Hospital for Sick Children, Toronto, Canada; Johns Hopkins University Medical Center, Baltimore, Md; Kapi'olani Medical Center for Women and Children, Honolulu, Hi; and Yale New Haven Children's Hospital.

The survey, which was conducted before and one year after surgery, asked parents how often children with pectus excavatum were irritable, frustrated or depressed and whether they were reluctant to be seen without a shirt or in a bathing suit before surgery.

Patients answered similar questions.

Both patients and parents also answered questions about whether the patient suffered pain or shortness of breath when exercising.

Patients and parents reported striking improvements psychologically and physically.

"One of the most interesting things we discovered was that there was not a direct correlation between the severity of the defect and the degree of improvement in body image," said Kelly. "Even patients with mild deformities experienced significant improvement in body image.

Although the study didn't focus on specific physical activities, it asked both patients and parents how often the pectus excavatum caused pre-surgery patients to have "trouble" exercising and being physically active.

The results showed a stunning improvement, with the physical difficulties score falling between "often" and "very often" before surgery and falling between "sometimes" and "never" after surgery.

Cash also believes the body image of the child may play a role in increased participation in athletics.

"Pectus excavatum leads many kids to avoid physical activities that would make their 'different looking' bodies evident to others," Cash said. "The surgery that remedies this 'difference' can improve their subjective body image, free them of this inhibition and permit them to do active things that may enhance their physical abilities and their sense of personal and social acceptability."


Contact: Ridgely Ingersoll
Children's Hospital of The King's Daughters

Related biology news :

1. Home Improvement Star Debbe Dunning is New smartTOUCH Spokesperson
2. Nutritionists of the UGR suggest diet improvements during Ramadan
3. Video released of rapid Alzheimers improvement after new immune-based treatment
4. Natural compounds in cocoa tied to blood flow improvements for adults with type 2 diabetes
5. Substantial improvement in essential cheap solar cell process
6. Summer-dormant tall fescue grass shows promise for pasture improvements
7. Physical activity and health: Finding the right prescription
8. Biophysical Society selects 2009 Distinguished Service, Emily M. Gray and Society Fellow recipients
9. UCSB study finds physical strength, fighting ability revealed in human faces
10. Guidelines urge physical activity during pregnancy
11. American Physical Society announces Physics, a new, free, online publication
Post Your Comments:
(Date:10/29/2015)... 29, 2015  Rubicon Genomics, Inc., today announced ... of its DNA library preparation products, including the ... ThruPLEX Plasma-seq kit. ThruPLEX Plasma-seq has been optimized ... NGS libraries for liquid biopsies--the analysis of cell-free ... applications in cancer and other conditions. Eurofins Scientific ...
(Date:10/29/2015)... OXFORD, Connecticut , October 29, 2015 /PRNewswire/ ... "Company"), a biometric authentication company focused on the ... Wocket® smart wallet announces that StackCommerce, a leading ... will be featuring the Wocket® smart wallet on ... NXTD ) ("NXT-ID" or the "Company"), a ...
(Date:10/27/2015)... 27, 2015 In the present market scenario, ... for various industry verticals such as banking, healthcare, defense, ... growing demand for secure & simplified access control and ... as hacking of bank accounts, misuse of users, , ... as PC,s, laptops, and smartphones are expected to provide ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:11/26/2015)... England , November 26, 2015 ... innovative medical device company specializing in imaging technologies, announced today ... European Commission as part of the Horizon 2020 European Union ... carry out a large-scale clinical trial in breast cancer. ... (Logo: , --> --> ...
(Date:11/25/2015)... and HOLLISTON, Mass. , Nov. 25, ... HART ), a biotechnology company developing bioengineered organ ... Jim McGorry will present at the LD Micro ... at 2:30 p.m. PT. The presentation will be webcast ... days. Management will also be available at the conference ...
(Date:11/25/2015)... 2015 The Global Genomics ... professional and in-depth study on the current state ... ) , The report ... definitions, classifications, applications and industry chain structure. The ... markets including development trends, competitive landscape analysis, and ...
(Date:11/24/2015)... -- Halozyme Therapeutics, Inc. (NASDAQ: HALO ) will be presenting ... on Wednesday, December 2 at 9:30 a.m. ET/6:30 a.m. ... will provide a corporate overview. th Annual Oppenheimer ... p.m. ET/10:00 a.m. PT . Jim Mazzola , vice ... overview. --> th Annual Oppenheimer Healthcare Conference in ...
Breaking Biology Technology: