Microscopic approach to craniosynostosis

James E. Baumgartner, John F. Teichgraeber, Amy L. Waller, Elena Grantcherova, Jaime Gateno, James J. Xia

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

20 Scopus citations


The purpose of this study is to describe a minimally invasive approach using a microscope and the subsequent helmet therapy. The authors have treated 14 patients with the microscopic technique between May 2001 and November 2003. In this group of patients, there were 3 females and 11 males with an average age of 10.5 weeks and a range of 4 to 28 weeks. The study included 8 patients with sagittal synostosis and 6 patients with other synostoses. In the latter group, there were 3 patients with metopic, one with unicoronal, one with bicoronal, and one with lambdoidal. The approach used limited incisions over the affected sutures. The craniotomy/craniectomy was completed using a 5-mm burr. Postoperative helmet therapy was begun within 2 weeks after surgery. In patients with sagittal synostosis, a mean of 1.5 helmets for a duration of 11.4 weeks was used. In the other groups of patients with craniosynostosis, a mean of 2.3 helmets for a duration of 13.5 weeks was used. A microscopic variation to the "minimally invasive" approach to craniosynostosis is presented. It provides excellent visualization, illumination, and control of the surgical field. When compared with traditional surgery, it results in shorter hospitalization and operative time and decreased blood loss. The authors note that critical to this approach is the postoperative helmet therapy. Early results are encouraging.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)997-1005
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Craniofacial Surgery
Issue number6
StatePublished - Nov 2005


  • Craniosynostosis
  • Microscopic
  • Molding helmet therapy

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery


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