What is Craniosynostosis?

Craniosynostosis is a birth condition, in which a baby’s skull development is defective. It occurs when the fibrous joints in the baby’s skull get attached to each other, prematurely. Fibrous joints are immovable joints and are connected to each other through fibrous connective tissue (known as collagen). The skull bones are connected by fibrous joints called sutures. In human anatomy, the bundle of collagen or fibrous tissue (known as tendons) attaches muscles to the bones. In craniosynostosis, the baby has a premature fusion of statures between the bones. Craniosynostosis can also indicate one or more suture fusion. It occurs before the baby’s brain fully develops. However, it does not stop brain growth, and a result, your baby is at a risk of having a deformed head shape. There are many types of craniosynostosis involving fusion of a single suture or multiple sutures. Single fusion is a more common incidence. Depending upon the severity, the child can be diagnosed with complex craniosynostosis (multiple fusions occur). Multiple fusions are linked to syndromic craniosynostosis (genetic syndrome).


A baby’s skull has seven bones, which are held together by fibrous tissues. During the baby’s brain growth, these sutures remain in a flexible mode, giving it space to grow. Under normal circumstances, the bones will naturally fuse when the baby is about 2 years old. The common symptoms of the disease include:

  • A misshapen head.
  • Wrinkles in the area of the affected.
  • Slow growth of the baby’s head.



Craniosynostosis can be genetic disorder. Sometimes the causes is not known. It can occur due to a combination of genes and environmental factors. They include:

  • Genetic syndrome such as apert syndrome (a rare genetic disorder which occurs because of a mutated gene).
  • Pfeiffer syndrome (random gene mutations).
  • Crouzon syndrome (gene mutation).



It is important for the child to get treatment in time. If the treatment is not in time, then craniosynostosis can cause permanent head and facial deformation, making the child feel socially conscious. The other main risk factors include: 

  • Slowed brain growth.
  • Cognitive disability.
  • Lack of energy.
  • Blindness or eye disorders.
  • Fits.



In order to prevent the occurrence of this disease, one should take care of the following:

  • Monitoring your child’s medicines.
  • Protecting your child from accident.
  • Giving nutritious diet to your child, and seeking medical help in time.

How is it diagnosed?

At Medanta, initial diagnosis by a pediatric neuro specialist will include:



How is it treated?

Depending upon the severity of the condition, a surgery is likely to be recommended. If the condition is mild, then the doctor will recommend to wear a molded helmet. This is required to get the misshapen head in shape.Types of surgeries include:<..

  • Endoscopic surgery

    It is a minimally invasive surgery. It is done on very young babies, who are suffering from a single fusion. An endoscope is used to fix the problem, by inserting it through small incisions in the scalp. And, then the surgeon opens the fused suture.

  • Open surgery

    It is a surgical incision made in the scalp, and the affected suture is reshaped. Plates and screws are done to fix the fusion.

When do I contact the doctor?

If there is any sign of a bulging soft spot, your child needs immediate medical attention. Also, if there is swelling, or fluid release from the affected areas, consult a doctor on an emergency basis. 

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