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Post-sternotomy pain syndrome following cardiac surgery: case report

Authors Bordoni B, Marelli F, Morabito B, Sacconi B, Severino P

Received 4 December 2016

Accepted for publication 21 March 2017

Published 15 May 2017 Volume 2017:10 Pages 1163—1169

DOI https://doi.org/10.2147/JPR.S129394

Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single-blind

Peer reviewers approved by Dr Colin Mak

Peer reviewer comments 2

Editor who approved publication: Dr Michael E Schatman


Bruno Bordoni,1 Fabiola Marelli,2,3 Bruno Morabito,2,3 Beatrice Sacconi,4,5 Paolo Severino6

1Department of Cardiology, Foundation Don Carlo Gnocchi, IRCCS, Institute of Hospitalization and Care, S Maria Nascente, Milan, Italy; 2CRESO, School of Osteopathy Centre for Research and Studies, Castellanza, Italy; 3CRESO, School of Osteopathy Centre for Research and Studies, Falconara Marittima, Italy; 4Department of Radiological, Oncological and Anatomopathological Sciences, Sapienza University of Rome, Rome, Italy; 5Center for Life Nano Science at Sapienza, Istituto Italiano di Tecnologia, Rome, Italy; 6Department of Cardiovascular, Respiratory, Nephrology, Anesthesiology and Geriatric Sciences, Sapienza University of Rome, Rome, Italy

Abstract: Over 2 million people undergo sternotomy worldwide for heart surgery each year, and many develop post-sternotomy pain syndrome (PSPS) which persists in the anterior thorax. In some patients, PSPS lasts for many years or suddenly reappears a long time after the sternotomy. The exact etiology of PSPS is unknown. This article presents a case report of a patient with a diagnosis of PSPS (after cardiac surgery 4 years prior) for whom an osteopathic approach was used, which successfully eliminated the pain. In a previous study, we demonstrated that this osteopathic procedure could reduce sternal pain associated with a recent surgical wound. Further efforts are needed to understand the reasons for PSPS. In light of new scientific data, these osteopathic techniques could contribute to a multidisciplinary approach to solve the problem.

Keywords: post-sternotomy pain syndrome, osteopathic, fascia, chronic pain, cardiac surgery

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