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Lynchburg Journal of Medical Science

Lynchburg Journal of Medical Science

Specialty

Pediatric Neurosurgery

Advisor

Dr. Lawrence Herman

Abstract

Assessment of a child with an abnormally shaped head is an important skill for the primary care provider to possess. Differentiating a patient with a benign condition, such as deformational positional plagiocephaly, that can be treated conservatively and a patient with a surgical condition that requires referral to a specialist, such as craniosynostosis, must be accurately and promptly recognized to prevent a delay in care. Minimally-invasive surgical techniques have proven to be beneficial in treating patients with craniosynostosis but can only be offered before a certain age. The astute clinician can develop the skills to identify the patterns of head growth and make a correct and timely diagnosis.

LEARNING OBJECTIVES

  • Identify the difference between deformational positional plagiocephaly (DPP) and craniosynostosis based on history and physical examination.

  • Know when to order imaging and when to refer the patient to a craniofacial specialist.

  • Recognize the advantages of early diagnosis and available treatment options.

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