Which specialist consultations are needed for the management of pectus excavatum?

Updated: Oct 30, 2018
  • Author: Andre Hebra, MD; Chief Editor: Girish D Sharma, MD, FCCP, FAAP  more...
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Answer

Consultation with a cardiologist and pulmonologist are not mandatory and are obtained only if indicated based on the medical history and physical examination findings. However, many physicians and insurance companies believe that such an assessment is important prior to surgery. Experience has shown that, unless medically indicated by the presence of cardiopulmonary symptoms or abnormal physical findings, routine preoperative consultation with such specialists is of little benefit in the clinical evaluation and outcome of patients with pectus excavatum. However, their input can be helpful in cases in which insurance companies deny coverage of the procedure.

Consultation with a physical therapist before or after operative repair of pectus excavatum is considered an important factor in good recovery from surgery. The physical therapist assists and instructs patients on appropriate stretching techniques and exercises that aid the patient in the recovery phase. Continue such therapy for at least one month after surgery, when most patients are free of any significant discomfort with routine activities of daily life. Moreover, the physical therapist can assist patients in establishing proper posture, an important factor for a good functional and cosmetic outcome after surgery.


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