Endoscopy-assisted early correction of single-suture metopic craniosynostosis: A 19-year experience

David F. Jimenez, Michael J. McGinity, Constance M. Barone

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

42 Scopus citations


OBJECTIVE The objective of this study was to present the authors’ 19-year experience treating metopic craniosynostosis by using an endoscopy-assisted technique and postoperative cranial orthotic therapy. The authors also aimed to provide a comprehensive, comparative statistical analysis of minimally invasive surgery (MIS) versus open surgery in reports previously published in the literature (through 2014) regarding only patients with metopic synostosis. METHODS A total of 141 patients with single-suture metopic nonsyndromic craniosynostosis sutures were treated between 1998 and 2017 by endoscopically resecting the synostosed bone followed by postoperative custom cranial orthosis use. All data used in the case series were collected prospectively and stored in a secure database. A comprehensive literature review was performed that included all previous case series reporting common surgical performance measures. A statistical comparison of traditional open methods versus MIS techniques was performed with regard to age, length of hospital stay (LOS), surgical time, estimated blood loss (EBL), and transfusion rate. RESULTS The mean age at the time of surgery in the current series was 4.1 months. The mean EBL was 33 ml (range 5–250 ml). One patient underwent an intraoperative blood transfusion and 5 underwent postoperative blood transfusion for a total transfusion rate of 4.3%. The mean operating time was 56 minutes. Ninety-eight percent of patients were discharged on the 1st postoperative day. The median size of the removed synostosed bone was 0.6 cm × 10 cm. The primary goal of achieving correction of the forehead deformity was obtained in 94% of the patients. One hundred eight patients presented with hypotelorism (76.6%). Those with a minimum 1-year follow-up achieved 99% correction (n = 97). Six patients younger than 1 year had not achieved correction at the time of follow-up (6%). There were no intra- or postoperative deaths. One patient had a temporary contact dermatitis to the helmet materials and 2 patients developed pseudomeningoceles, which were successfully treated with a lumbar drain and/or spinal tap. No patient required nor underwent a second surgical procedure. Regarding the previously published literature through 2014, the reported EBL in patients who underwent MIS versus traditional open methods was 54.7 ml versus 224 ml, respectively. The reported average age for patients undergoing MIS versus traditional open methods was 3.8 months versus 11.5 months. The average LOS for patients undergoing MIS versus traditional open methods was 1.7 days versus 3.7 days. The average reported surgical time for those undergoing MIS versus traditional open methods was 66.7 minutes versus 223.7 minutes. The transfusion rate for patients undergoing MIS versus traditional open methods was 22% versus 77%. All of the above differences demonstrated statistical significance. CONCLUSIONS The authors’ team has safely and effectively performed 141 metopic craniosynostosis corrections over the past 19 years, with excellent outcomes. Literature review comparing metrics such as LOS, EBL, operating time, and transfusion rate demonstrates a statistically significant improvement in all commonly reported measurements. MIS techniques are safe and effective and should be offered to parents and patients as an option at craniofacial centers treating this condition.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)61-74
Number of pages14
JournalJournal of Neurosurgery: Pediatrics
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 2019


  • Craniofacial
  • Craniosynostosis
  • Endoscopy
  • Metopic
  • Trigonocephaly

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery
  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health
  • Clinical Neurology


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