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Psychological contents and social effects associated to peripheral facial paralysis: a speech-language approach

Author(s): Silva, Mabile Francine Ferreira | Cunha, Maria Claudia | Lazarini, Paulo Roberto | Fouquet, Marina Lang

Journal: International Archives of Otorhinolaryngology
ISSN 1809-9777

Volume: 15;
Issue: 4;
Start page: 450;
Date: 2011;
Original page

Keywords: facial paralysis | bell paralysis | case studies | psychosocial impact

Introduction: The peripheral facial paralysis (PFP) results from the reduction or interruption of the axonal transport to the seventh cranial nerve resulting in complete or partial paralysis of the facial movements. The facial deformity and limitation of movements, besides affecting the aesthetics and functionality, can significantly interfere with interpersonal communication. Objective: Investigate the psychological contents and other social effects associated to PFP in adult subjects, performing a comparative analysis in three groups of subjects with PFP: at flaccid, recovery and sequel phases. Method: Quantitative and qualitative research. 16 adult subjects, from both sexes, aging between 43 and 88 years old, with PFP. Procedure: Open interviews with subjects. The material was recorded in audio and video, literally transcribed, systematized through categorical and statistical analysis. Results: The subjects bearing sequels presented higher statistical significance of psychological contents and social effects associated to PFP. Followed, respectively, by those that were on flaccid and recovery phases. The results suggest that the speech-language therapist, besides performing functional and aesthetical rehabilitation with the subject with PFP, needs to be aware of psychological and social aspects that may be involved, in order to evaluate and seek to reduce the degree of psychological distress and promote the social adjustment of these patients. Conclusion: The biopsychosocial approach to patients with PFP revealed a wide and significant range of subjective contents that warrant new studies that may contribute to the effectiveness of the speech-language clinical method to approach this medical condition.
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