Child's Nervous System

, Volume 29, Issue 7, pp 1155–1161

Three-dimensional analysis of positional plagiocephaly before and after molding helmet therapy in comparison to normal head growth

  • Tilmann Schweitzer
  • Hartmut Böhm
  • Christian Linz
  • Beatrice Jager
  • Lucia Gerstl
  • Felix Kunz
  • Angelika Stellzig-Eisenhauer
  • Ralf-Ingo Ernestus
  • Jürgen Krauß
  • Philipp Meyer-Marcotty
Original Paper

DOI: 10.1007/s00381-013-2030-y

Cite this article as:
Schweitzer, T., Böhm, H., Linz, C. et al. Childs Nerv Syst (2013) 29: 1155. doi:10.1007/s00381-013-2030-y

Abstract

Objective

Stereophotogrammetry enables a simple and radiation free longitudinal analysis of skull asymmetries: in a three-dimensional coordinate system various distances (length, breadth, cephalic index, oblique diameters, ear shift, head circumference) can be analyzed. We also defined separate volume sections in order to further quantify the degree of asymmetry in the posterior and anterior components of both sides of the head.

Patients and methods

In 51 infants (mean age, 6 months; SD 0.97) with positional plagiocephaly, we determined these parameters at the beginning as well as at the end of molding helmet therapy (mean therapy time 4.9 months). Thirty-seven infants without positional deformity (mean age, 6.4 months; SD 0.3) served as control group and provided data about what appears to be normal and how these parameters change during growth over a comparable period of time.

Results

Compared with the control group, the plagiocephalic heads were more brachycephalic, but closely approximated the normal shape under molding therapy. The striking volume difference between the left and right posterior sections in the plagiocephalic children (the mean volume of the flattened side being 21 % smaller than the one on the contralateral side) improved as well (to a residual difference of mean 8 %) and ended up with a value close to the control group (mean 6 %).

Conclusion

There is a broad clinical application area for stereophotogrammetry analyzing skull morphology: In plagiocephalic infants we demonstrate impressive changes of head shape under molding therapy; in normal-looking infants we describe the extent of unperceived asymmetry.

Keywords

Positional plagiocephaly Stereophotogrammetry Molding helmet Unperceived asymmetry 

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  • Tilmann Schweitzer
    • 1
  • Hartmut Böhm
    • 2
  • Christian Linz
    • 2
  • Beatrice Jager
    • 3
  • Lucia Gerstl
    • 5
  • Felix Kunz
    • 6
  • Angelika Stellzig-Eisenhauer
    • 7
  • Ralf-Ingo Ernestus
    • 4
  • Jürgen Krauß
    • 3
  • Philipp Meyer-Marcotty
    • 6
  1. 1.Department of Pediatric NeurosurgeryCraniofacial Center, University of WürzburgWürzburgGermany
  2. 2.Department of Maxillo-Facial-Surgery and Plastic SurgeryCraniofacial Center, University of WürzburgWürzburgGermany
  3. 3.Department of Pediatric NeurosurgeryUniversity of WürzburgWürzburgGermany
  4. 4.Department of NeurosurgeryUniversity of WürzburgWürzburgGermany
  5. 5.Department of Pediatric NeurologyUniversity Childrens HospitalWürzburgGermany
  6. 6.Department of OrthodonticsCraniofacial Center, University of WürzburgWürzburgGermany
  7. 7.Department of OrthodonticsUniversity of WürzburgWürzburgGermany