Surgical treatment of craniosynostosis began in the 1890's and multiple procedures have been developed and advocated for the treatment of this condition. In modern times, surgical correction of craniosynostosis is carried out by surgical craniofacial teams performing a variety of procedures which often times leads to successful correction of the associated deformities.
The "traditional" operation to treat craniosynostosis is carried out by making a scalp incision from ear-to-ear, mobilizing the infant's scalp to expose the skull, total or sub-total skull removal, which is followed by reshaping and replacement of the skull with a variety of materials.
Craniosynostosis surgery typically takes three to seven hours, and often requires blood transfusions with hospitalization of three to five days. Extensive postoperative swelling is often seen after craniosynostosis surgery and can be associated with some pain and discomfort.
Resection or removal of the affected suture has been tried in the past with mixed results. Although results with these surgeries have indeed improved, the patients have paid a higher price in terms of increased swelling, pain, bleeding, blood transfusions rates, increased complications and longer hospitalizations.
Even though we have performed traditional craniosynostosis surgery for many years with very good results, our goals have been to decrease complications, surgical trauma and need for transfusions while obtaining excellent results that compare favorably or are even better than traditional craniosynostosis surgeries.