Spatially Detailed 3D Quantification of Improved Facial Symmetry After Surgery in Children With Unicoronal Synostosis

Louise Öwall, Tron A Darvann, Hanne B Hove, Lars Bøgeskov, Sven Kreiborg, Nuno V Hermann

9 Citations (Scopus)


OBJECTIVE:: To assess improvement of soft-tissue facial symmetry in children surgically treated for unicoronal synostosis (UCS) in infancy, to correlate pre- and postsurgical facial asymmetry and to evaluate whether the improvement was visually recognizable.

DESIGN:: Case-controlled follow-up.

PATIENTS/SETTINGS:: Eleven Danish children diagnosed with UCS were included, 3 of whom had tested positive for Muenke mutation. Preoperative computed tomography scans and postoperative 3dMD surfaces were available for measurements. A control group of healthy children matched for age and sex was employed.

MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES:: Pre- and postsurgical facial asymmetry was analyzed using a computerized method capable of objective and spatially detailed quantification in 3-dimension (transverse, vertical, and sagittal directions). Asymmetry was evaluated in the facial region and 6 subregions (forehead, mouth, eyes, nose, cheek, and chin).

RESULTS:: The largest significant improvement was seen in the sagittal direction of the facial (1.9 mm), forehead (2.0 mm), and cheek (3.4 mm) regions. Small but significant improvements were also seen in the mouth, chin, and eye regions. No significant improvement was seen in the nose region. Significant correlations were found between the pre- and postsurgically calculated facial asymmetry and between calculated asymmetry and clinical validation scores.

CONCLUSIONS:: All patients presented with improved facial symmetry after surgery and the improvements were visually recognizable. However, only 1 (9.1%) of the 11 patients reached a level of facial asymmetry as low as that seen in the control group. The best outcome was, in general, seen in cases with mild facial asymmetry presurgically.

Original languageEnglish
JournalCleft Palate-Craniofacial Journal
Issue number7
Pages (from-to)918-928
Number of pages11
Publication statusPublished - 2019


  • 3dMD
  • facial asymmetry
  • surgical outcome
  • unicoronal synostosis


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