gms | German Medical Science

59th Annual Meeting of the German Society of Neurosurgery (DGNC)
3rd Joint Meeting with the Italian Neurosurgical Society (SINch)

German Society of Neurosurgery (DGNC)

1 - 4 June 2008, Würzburg

Influence of surgical treatment on the development of children with non-syndromal craniosynostosis

Einfluss der operativen Behandlung auf die Entwicklung von Kindern mit nonsyndromomaler Kraniosynostose

Meeting Abstract

  • corresponding author A. Brentrup - Klinik und Poliklinik für Neurochirurgie, Universitätsklinikum Münster
  • J. Azouz - Klinik und Poliklinik für Neurochirurgie, Universitätsklinikum Münster
  • S. Weiler - Klinik und Poliklinik für Kinder- und Jugendmedizin, Psychosomatik, Universitätsklinikum Münster
  • H. W. Bothe - Klinik und Poliklinik für Neurochirurgie, Universitätsklinikum Münster

Deutsche Gesellschaft für Neurochirurgie. Società Italiana di Neurochirurgia. 59. Jahrestagung der Deutschen Gesellschaft für Neurochirurgie e.V. (DGNC), 3. Joint Meeting mit der Italienischen Gesellschaft für Neurochirurgie (SINch). Würzburg, 01.-04.06.2008. Düsseldorf: German Medical Science GMS Publishing House; 2008. DocMO.06.04

The electronic version of this article is the complete one and can be found online at:

Published: May 30, 2008

© 2008 Brentrup et al.
This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License ( You are free: to Share – to copy, distribute and transmit the work, provided the original author and source are credited.



Objective: Since the very beginning of the surgical treatment of craniosynostosis, there has been a controversial discussion whether this entity is a disease or simply an alteration of appearance. Up until now we have no hints of morphological symptoms as papilledema or physiological symptoms like increased intracranial pressure. However, some authors discuss a delay of motor, speech, social and emotional development. To support this hypothesis, we performed the following investigation.

Methods: From 9-1-2002 to 8-1-2006, 52 conservatively and operatively treated children with non syndromal craniosynostosis were tested with the developmental test ET 6-6, Petermann and Stein before treatment, immediately after operation and after 12 further months. We performed a non randomized and open labeled cohort study. The variables were surgical vs. non surgical treatment and the parameters of ET 6-6 (movement, cognition, memory, strategies of handling, speech understanding and production ...).

Results: Statistical analysis was performed including Four-field table, Odd's ratio, Control Event Rate, Experimental Event Rate, Absolute Reduction of Risk, Relative Risk, Number Needed to Treat, U-Test of Mann-Whitney, and Wilcoxon-Test. In conclusion, statistical results showed no significant difference between both groups of patients. E.g., deficits of body movement were found in 60% vs. 62,5%, speech development was delayed in 60% vs. 50 % for conservatively and operatively treated children at the time of the very last testing.

Conclusions: While children with non-syndromal craniosynostosis sometimes suffer of deficits mainly of psychomotoric and mental development, some other dimensions improved significantly after operative treatment. However, in comparison to non-surgically treated children there was no gross difference. In conclusion, our study has shown no positive effect of operative treatment on the development of children with non-syndromal craniosynostosis.