Minimally Invasive Endoscopic Surgery for Infantile Craniosynostosis: A Longitudinal Cohort Study

J Pediatr. 2020 Jan;216:142-149.e2. doi: 10.1016/j.jpeds.2019.09.037. Epub 2019 Nov 1.


Objective: To evaluate patient outcomes of minimally invasive endoscopic strip craniectomy (ESC) for craniosynostosis.

Study design: This is a retrospective cohort analysis (2004-2018) of 500 consecutive infants with craniosynostosis treated by ESC with orthotic therapy at a single center. Operative outcomes included transfusions, complications, and reoperations as well as head circumference change based on World Health Organization percentiles. Multivariable logistic regression was used to identify risk factors associated with blood transfusion. Paired t tests were used for within-patient comparisons and Fisher exact test to compare syndromic and nonsyndromic subgroups.

Results: ESC was associated with low rates of blood transfusion (6.6%), complications (1.4%), and reoperations (3.0%). Risk factors for transfusion included syndromic craniosynostosis (P = .01) and multiple fused sutures (P = .02). Median surgical time was 47 minutes, and hospital length of stay 1 day. Transfusion and reoperation rates were higher among syndromic patients (both P < .001). Head circumference normalized by 12 months of age relative to World Health Organization criteria in infants with sagittal, coronal, and multisuture craniosynostosis (all P < .001).

Conclusions: ESC is a safe, effective, and durable correction of infantile craniosynostosis. ESC can achieve head growth normalization with low risks of blood transfusion, complications, or reoperation. Early identification of craniosynostosis in the newborn period and prompt referral by pediatricians allows families the option of ESC vs larger and riskier open reconstruction procedures.

Keywords: craniosynostosis; endoscopic; infant; minimally invasive; outcomes; pediatric; surgery.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Cohort Studies
  • Craniosynostoses / surgery*
  • Craniotomy / methods*
  • Endoscopy*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Infant
  • Longitudinal Studies
  • Male
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Treatment Outcome