ANCHOR LEAD:: INFANTS NEED THEIR SOFT SKULLS, ELIZABETH TRACEY REPORTS
Babies are born with soft skulls on purpose, so that they can be born safely and their brains can grow. Premature fusion of those bones is called craniosynostosis and should not be confused with cranial plagiocephaly or flat areas on the skull, an increasingly common condition. Edward Ahn, a neurosurgeon at Johns Hopkins, explains that craniosynostosis does require surgery, but a minimally invasive approach is possible.
AAHN: This minimally invasive option is something that we can perform when the baby is much younger because we do not expect a large blood lose. The minimally invasive option involves the use of an endoscope, a small tube where the surgeon can look into small areas inside the skull just through a very small incision. The surgery itself takes about an hour and it involves very little blood lose and there’s very little chance of requiring a blood transfusion, and the babies are usually in the hospital overnight and that’s it, they go home. :30
Ahn says such children will need to wear a head protection helmet for some time following surgery. I’m Elizabeth Tracey reporting.