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INTRODUCTION: Facial palsy is often associated with impaired facial function and altered appearance. However, the literature with regards to the psychological adjustment of children and adolescents with facial palsy has not been systematically reviewed to date. This paper aimed to review all published research with regards to psychosocial adjustment for children and adolescents with facial palsy. METHODS: MEDLINE, CINAHL, Embase, PsychInfo and AMED databases were searched and data was extracted with regards to participant characteristics, study methodology, outcome measures used, psychosocial adjustment and study quality. RESULTS: Five studies were eligible for inclusion, all of which investigated psychosocial adjustment in participants with Moebius syndrome, a form of congenital facial palsy. Many parents reported their children to have greater social difficulties than general population norms, with difficulties potentially increasing with age. Other areas of psychosocial adjustment, including behaviour, anxiety and depression, were found to be more comparable to the general population. DISCUSSION: Children and adolescents with Moebius syndrome may experience social difficulties. However, they also demonstrate areas of resilience. Further research including individuals with facial palsy of other aetiologies is required in order to determine the psychosocial adjustment of children and adolescents with facial palsy.

Original publication




Journal article


Int J Environ Res Public Health

Publication Date





Moebius syndrome, facial palsy, psychosocial adjustment, Adolescent, Anxiety, Anxiety Disorders, Child, Cross-Sectional Studies, Emotional Adjustment, Facial Paralysis, Female, Humans, Male, Mobius Syndrome