When comparing the Nuss Procedure to older “open” surgical options, there are several benefits of the procedure’s less invasive method.
The primary benefits include a shorter operating time, less blood loss, and smaller, less visible incisions.1 Some clinical data also suggests that because no cartilage or pieces of rib are being removed during the procedure, the patient’s chest and rib cage will be able to grow and repair itself in a natural manner.2
The combined effect of these benefits means that a patient’s body is subjected to less trauma compared to other open surgery options. The Nuss Procedure is a widely-accepted effective method for treating pectus excavatum.2
Research focusing on the Nuss Procedure indicates that post-operative patients, who have had the bar removed, show significant improvement in lung capacity as tested by “Forced Expiratory Volume in 1 Second” or FEV1. This data suggests that these patients have similar or equivalent lung function to healthy individuals with no history of Pectus Excavatum.3,4,5,6,7 This demonstrates that a patient’s lungs may be able to transfer more air and function more efficiently following treatment with the Nuss Procedure and removal of the Pectus Support Bar.8
Healthcare professionals use function tests to evaluate how well (or poorly) certain organs are working within the body. The results of function tests are always compared to a “reference range” which is a range of values that would be observed in healthy people of similar age, sex, race, etc. to the patient. Heart function is evaluated in this way.
Data shows that surgical correction of Pectus excavatum can improve specific heart function values. This means that:
The values are closer to the reference range than before surgery.
All of the above measurements contribute to improved heart and lung function. Benefits of improved cardiopulmonary function might include more stamina during exercise, not tiring as quickly, and the ability to participate in sports for a longer period of time than was possible before the corrective procedure.9
When considering a corrective surgery, many patients are concerned that their deformity will reoccur. Published data evaluating the success rate of the Nuss procedure, indicates that recurrence is reported in less than 2% of cases.10,11,12,13,14,15,16 A high probability of successful deformity correction and a low chance of recurrence is a significant benefit of the Nuss Procedure.
Aside from the potential physical benefits of the Nuss Procedure, surgeons may assert that humanistic or quality-of-life measures such as “satisfaction with appearance” and “increased confidence after surgery” should also be considered when evaluating the success of the surgery.17,18 Some of the more common aspects of humanistic outcomes include:
The response data in clinical research shows that patient satisfaction after surgery is high and approximately 82% of parents believe their child to be “satisfied” or “very satisfied” with the results. These results indicate that the likelihood of a patient being satisfied with the results of the Nuss Procedure, barring complications, is high.18,19
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Talk to your surgeon about whether the MIRPE/Nuss procedure is right for you and the risks of the procedure, including the risk of implant wear, loosening or failure, and pain, swelling and infection. Zimmer Biomet does not practice medicine; only a surgeon can answer your questions regarding your individual symptoms, diagnosis and treatment.