BACKGROUND: Metopic craniosynostosis is traditionally repaired with fronto-orbital advancement (FOA) or, alternatively, limited short scar strip craniectomy (LSSSC) followed by helmet therapy. There is controversy among surgeons regarding resultant head shape outcomes between the 2 methods. This study aims to assess how surgeons perceive the postoperative aesthetic results of the 2 metopic craniosynostosis repair methods. METHODS: A retrospective analysis was performed on 13 (n = 6 LSSSC; n = 7 FOA) patients who presented for surgical correction of isolated metopic craniosynostosis via either LSSSC (followed by helmet therapy) or FOA. Clinical photographs at 1 year postop were shown to 10 craniofacial surgeons who rated the aesthetic outcomes on a Likert scale of 1 (poor) to 5 (excellent) and guessed which surgical method was performed. RESULTS: Mean age at the time of the procedure was younger in LSSSC than FOA (3.1 ± 1.0 versus 17.5 ± 8.5 months; P < 0.001). Mean blood loss was significantly lower with LSSSC versus FOA (202.0 ± 361.2 versus 371.43 ± 122.9 mL; P < 0.001), as was mean blood transfusion requirement (92.5 ± 49.9 versus 151.3 ± 51.2 mL; P < 0.001) and mean duration of the operation (3:06 ± 0:24 versus 7:53 ± 0:31 hours; P < 0.001). Mean surgeon scores of aesthetic outcomes were similar between groups: LSSSC, 3.27 ± 1.09; FOA, 3.51 ± 0.95 (P = 0.171). When asked to identify which procedure patients had received, only 63.8% of responses were correct. CONCLUSIONS: Limited short scar strip craniectomy offers an important alternative to traditional open FOA and should be considered as an option for children diagnosed with metopic craniosynostosis.
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