Send to

Choose Destination
J Neurosurg Pediatr. 2011 Jun;7(6):620-6. doi: 10.3171/2011.3.PEDS10418.

The management of sagittal synostosis using endoscopic suturectomy and postoperative helmet therapy.

Author information

Department of Plastic Surgery, Children’s Hospital Boston, Harvard Medical School, 300 Longwood Avenue, Boston, MA 02115, USA.



Suturectomy as a treatment for craniosynostosis was largely replaced in the late twentieth century by more extensive, but predictable, cranial remodeling procedures. Recent technical innovations, such as using the endoscope combined with postoperative orthotic reshaping, have led to a resurgence of interest in suturectomy as a safer, less invasive method.


A retrospective chart review was performed for all cases of sagittal synostosis treated with endoscopic sagittal suture strip craniectomy and helmet therapy between 2004 and 2008. Data collected included gestational age, genetic evaluations and syndromic status, age at operation, duration of procedure, need for blood transfusions, length of hospital stay, preoperative and postoperative head circumference percentile and cranial index, duration of helmet use, length of follow-up, complications, and revisions.


Fifty-six patients with isolated sagittal synostosis were treated using endoscopic suturectomy and completed helmet therapy. Mean age at time of procedure was 3.24 months. Mean operative duration was 45.32 minutes. Mean hospital stay was 1.39 days. There were 2 transfusions and no deaths. The mean length of follow-up was 2.34 years. Helmet therapy was instituted for a mean of 7.47 months. Head circumference percentile increased from 61.42% to 89.27% over 2 years of follow-up. Cranial index increased from a preoperative mean of 0.69 to 0.76 over 2 years of follow-up. Reoperations for synostosis included 1 sagittal suture refusion and 2 cases in which other sutures fused.


Sagittal synostosis can be safely treated with endoscopic suturectomy and helmet therapy. Improvements in cranial volume and shape are comparable to open procedures and are enduring.

Comment in

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for Sheridan PubFactory
Loading ...
Support Center