Craniofacial abnormalities and diseases are conditions, which involved the skull and upper portion of the face. While cleft lip/palate is the most common craniofacial condition, Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeons at Houston Methodist Hospital treat a wide variety of other conditions, including:
- Apert Syndrome
- Carpenter Syndrome
- Cleidocranial dysplasia
- Crouzon Syndrome
- Ectodermal Dysplasia
- Goldenhar Syndrome
- Hemangiomas and Vascular Malformations
- Mandibulofacial Dysostosis
- Microtia and Hemifacial Microsomia
- Nager Syndrome
- Miller Syndrome
- Orbital Hypertelorism
- Pfeiffer Syndrome
- Pierre Robin Syndrome
- Saethre-Chotzen Syndrome
- Treacher Collins
- Waardenberg Syndrome
Most craniofacial conditions develop in babies. The skull is a small collection of bones that abut one another at areas known as sutures. Four bones meet in the anterior portion (the “soft spot”) of the skull. As the child grows, so too does the brain, allowing the sutures to rapidly expand symmetrically. The brain determines the size of the head; however, if the suture(s) closes to early, the brain will grow in a different direction. This condition is known as craniosynostosis.
While some of these conditions are hereditary, the majority is not. Certain conditions can be detected when the child is born, but some develop over time and may not be noticeable until after several months.
Surgery may be an option for those with craniofacial disorders; however, it is dependent on the type of condition. Often a multi-disciplinary team that includes an Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeon, a Plastic/Reconstructive Surgeon along with a Neurosurgeon performs these surgeries.
There are some problems associated with this type of surgery, including blood loss that might require a transfusion. Not having the surgery might lead to pressure build up in the head, causing a brain injury and children may suffer from deformities. However, it is best to speak with the surgeon about the best course of treatment to treat the condition.
For more information on craniofacial conditions or for a referral, please call 713-790-3333.