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Severity of Pectus Excavatum is a Risk Factor for Primary Spontaneous Pneumothorax


Background and Objective

This study aimed to investigate the relationship between bleb formation, primary spontaneous pneumothorax (PSP) and pectus excavatum (PE).


From July 2005 to December 2016, the records of 514 patients with PE who underwent the Nuss procedure were obtained from a prospectively collected database and reviewed. Clinical features, images and treatments were analyzed retrospectively.


The incidence rate of bleb formation was 26.5% in PE patients. The bleb group had a greater body height (174.4 cm vs. 170.4 cm, p < 0.001), a higher Haller index (HI; 4.2 vs. 3.43, p < 0.001) and a higher risk of developing PSP than the non-bleb group (risk ratio 9.8, p = 0.002). HI values larger than 3.615 had good discriminatory power for predicting bleb formation in patients with PE. With each increase in the HI, PE patients had a 2.2-fold greater odds ratio of bleb formation (odds ratio 2.221, CI 1.481–3.330, p < 0.001).


We discovered that a high percentage of PE patients have bleb formation and a higher risk of PSP, especially those with an HI >3.615. High-resolution computed tomography of the chest may be useful for evaluating both the HI and the presence of blebs in the lungs before performing a corrective surgical procedure.

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Correspondence to Tsai-Wang Huang.

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Huang, H., Huang, Y., Lin, K. et al. Severity of Pectus Excavatum is a Risk Factor for Primary Spontaneous Pneumothorax. World J Surg (2020).

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