Craniofacial Disorders Treatment
The key to treating craniofacial disorders or craniosynostosis is early detection and treatment.
Some forms of craniofacial disorders or craniosynostosis can result in impacting the brain and development of a child. The degree of the problem is dependent on the severity of the craniosynostosis, the number of sutures that are fused, and brain problems or other organ system problems that may affect the child.
Depending on the type and severity of the craniofacial syndrome, a common treatment path is surgery, which helps correct the formation of your child’s skull or other facial bones.
Optimal care of infants with craniofacial anomalies requires a multidisciplinary team approach. Infants should be evaluated within the first few weeks of life. However, referral to ANA, for example, is appropriate at any age.
Surgical treatment can greatly improve functionality for your child, although the surgeries are usually complex. Advanced neurosurgery has greatly improved the outcomes, alongside pediatric specialists with extensive experience. Read more about our expert neurosurgeons.
Once the diagnosis of craniosynostosis has been confirmed, the treatment is surgical correction. The operative treatment of craniosynostosis is tailored to the type and severity of each case, as well as the age of the patient.
The best time to intervene is when the infant is between three and nine months of age. However, infants with symptoms and signs of increased intracranial pressure require urgent surgical decompression.
The principal goal in the treatment of craniosynostosis is to remove and remodel fused sutures in the skull.
Children with syndromic craniosynostosis often suffer from progressive synostosis of multiple sutures of the skull and skull base. These patients require additional surgical consideration.
- Hydrocephalus: More common in children with multiple synostoses (we explain more here).
- Airway management: Cranial base abnormalities and midface anomalies can cause significant airway obstruction. This airway obstruction can often lead to prolonged operative intubation or tracheotomy placement and it is imperative to discuss these possibilities with your surgeon.
- Ophthalmological Consideration: Children with syndromic craniosynostosis have severe craniofacial deformities typically involving shallow orbits and abnormally long or short distance between the eyes. In these cases, an oculoplastic evaluation should be obtained in order to assure that measures are taken to protect the orbits.