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Scand J Plast Reconstr Surg. 1981;15(3):227-33.

Congenital craniofacial asymmetry: early treatment.

Abstract

Congenital craniofacial asymmetry has two dominant causes: isolated synostosis and craniofacial clefts. Treatment considerations in these problems differ from those with isolated cranial or isolated facial defects. Isolated cranial defects are most frequently treated by the neurosurgeon with craniectomy alone. Isolated facial asymmetry when congenital in origin usually manifests as hemifacial microsomia and based on our experience with 40 such patients, is best treated in later childhood. Treatment timing of craniofacial asymmetry varies with the cause, but is best done in the first two years of life. Nasofrontal encephaloceles are usually best treated in the first few weeks of life; synostosis syndromes are treated at six months of age after the facial sutures have had time to stabilize sufficiently for adequate dissection and mobilization; and other craniofacial clefts at approximately two years of age following descent of the teeth and better homeostatic capability of the patient. Based on our series of 58 patients, 40 treated with isolated synostosis at less than one year of age, eight at more than one year of age, and ten patients with craniofacial clefts, the guidelines for timing and methods of treatment have evolved. Liberal use of craniectomy bone with expected regrowth is possible in the first year of life, and more limited use in the second year of life. This bone is used to hold the repositioned orbit, augment hypoplastic zygomas, and reconstruct noses, or for other uses. In isolated synostosis, repositioning provides a form of immediate catch-up growth then proceeds normally. In craniofacial clefts, repositioning puts structures into normal relations and growth likewise proceeds normally. The isolated synostosis syndromes treated at a later age are done with more difficulty, though may be effectively cared for. Complications other than incomplete structural correction have been nonexistent in the group two years of age and less.

PMID:
7347009
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
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