Cranial vault deformity and intracranial hypertension secondary to cephalic molding at delivery: a case and its management

J Craniofac Surg. 1999 May;10(3):226-9. doi: 10.1097/00001665-199905000-00010.


Cephalic molding at birth has been traditionally felt to be benign, resulting in only a transient and self-correcting cranial deformity. However, we report a 6-month-old infant who presented with extensive cephalic molding at birth in combination with persistent brachyturricephaly from unilateral coronal synostosis and occipital deformation. Helmet therapy over a 3-month period failed despite patient compliance and numerous adjustments. Intracranial hypertension developed, as documented by multiple occipital bony erosions on computed tomographic scan and by an elevated direct intracranial pressure reading. The cranial vault asymmetry was corrected in two surgical stages: (1) occipital bar advancement, temporoparietal bone remodeling, and midline sagittal strip compression to reduce vertical height, followed in 3 months by (2) fronto-orbital advancement and remodeling.

MeSH terms

  • Birth Injuries / complications*
  • Birth Injuries / surgery
  • Craniosynostoses / complications
  • Craniosynostoses / etiology*
  • Craniotomy / methods*
  • Humans
  • Infant
  • Intracranial Hypertension / etiology*
  • Intracranial Hypertension / surgery*