Pediatric Craniofacial Surgery
Craniosynostosis is a skull malformation that results in premature fusion of one or more of the bone plates in infancy. It can cause brain growth problems with negative neurologic consequences. It requires surgical repair before the age of one. Surgery is a team approach which is coordinated with a pediatric neurosurgeon to maximize the benefits and to minimize the risks of surgery.
Corrective Jaw Surgery:
Corrective jaw surgery is often done due to unequal growth of the jaw that can result in bite problems that cannot be corrected by braces alone. Jaw misalignment can result in difficulty with chewing, biting, or swallowing; speech problems; chronic jaw or TMJ pain; open bite; protruding jaw; and breathing problems. These treatments are typically coordinated with your orthodontist to achieve a corrected bite.
Pediatric pathology is defined as structural and functional deviations from normal and can arise as growths and tumors of the face, skull, and jaw. It can affect one in every 50 infants. Continuous improvement in imaging and an expert in craniofacial surgery is necessary to treat these conditions properly in the pediatric population.
Pediatric Facial or Craniofacial Trauma:
Craniofacial growth and development is particularly important in treating children who have been involved in accidents involving the face. Initial treatment requires prompt attention; but due to the changing development of the craniomaxillofacial region, often secondary deformities can persist. It is the job of the craniofacial surgeon to provide comprehensive facial rehabilitation through the understanding of craniofacial growth and 3-dimensional imaging to improve functional and aesthetic outcomes.
Sleep Apnea in Infants:
Sleep apnea in children differs from the adult population in that it can affect feeding, weight gain, and cognitive development, as well as cause behavioral issues. Treatment of these conditions are completed in a team approach. The team includes an oral surgeon, neurologist that specializes in pediatric sleep apnea, and an ear, nose, and throat physician. If surgery is an option for your child, a discussion of treatments will be done to allow you to make an informed decision.
Sleep Apnea in Adults:
Sleep apnea is an increasing problem in the general adult population. There are adverse outcomes from untreated obstructive sleep apnea, including, sleepiness, inattention, fatigue, cardiovascular morbidities, and increase in mortality. Maxillomandibular advancement is a surgical treatment for sleep apnea to open the airway 3-dimensionally, which can result in 90% success rates.
Plagiocephaly is a flat spot on the baby’s head due to preferential sleeping or intrauterine positions, or torticollis. The treatment of plagiocephaly is not surgical, because it is due to deformational molding of the skull. Dr. Wilson can educate parents on repositioning techniques or custom helmet therapy to help improve head shape.
Difficulty Breast Feeding/Tongue-tie
Sometimes infants experience difficulty breast feeding because their frenulum, the small fold of skin that prevents our tongues from moving too far, is too short or tight. A simple procedure called a frenulectomy or frenectomy can be performed in our office to clip the frenulum and improve an infant’s ability to breastfeed.