Reconstructive Craniofacial Surgery

Early corrective surgery can have a tremendous positive impact on children with craniofacial syndromes and birth defects

Reconstructive Craniofacial
Patient with severe forehead defect present for 13 years after being struck by a baseball bat.
Reconstructive Craniofacial
Patient 6 days after reconstruction of forehead with titanium mesh and hydroxyapatite.

Being born with a normal-appearing face is something we often take for granted, but for some unfortunate children this is not the case. There are a great variety of craniofacial syndromes and birth defects that can occur ranging from cleft lip and palate to afflictions such as Crouzon’s or Treacher Collins Syndrome. These disfiguring facial birth defects have great effect not only on a child’s appearance but on his or her function, psychological development, and well being.

Early corrective surgery can have a tremendous positive impact on these children. Our doctors are experienced in treating the most severe craniofacial deformities and have been featured on the local, national, and international news for surgery performed on a 5 year old child with craniofacial microsomia utilizing computer-generated stereolithographic models to plan the surgery. Using a computer-generated 3-D model the doctors were able to actually perform the skeletal surgery on the model and shape the titanium bone plates that hold the bones together before even entering the operating room. Dr. Bianchi, Dr. Nordone, Dr. Kanter, Dr. Huffman, Dr. Kern, Dr. Schlesinger and Dr. Ilacqua are members of the multidisciplinary cleft palate-craniofacial team at St. Christopher’s Hospital for Children which allows their patients access to a team of the most experienced professionals from various medical and allied health specialties to deal with these complex problems.

Reconstructive Craniofacial
Top down view of Steriolithographic model showing severe depression of the left cheekbone and eye socket region.
Reconstructive Craniofacial
Top down view of model after moving the midface and eye sockets into proper position.

Reconstructive Craniofacial
Frontal view of model prior to making bone incisions to move the midface and eye sockets
Reconstructive Craniofacial
Side view of model after mobilizing the midface and eye sockets
Reconstructive Craniofacial
Frontal view of model after mobilizing the midface and eye sockets
Reconstructive Craniofacial
Frontal view of the model with midface and eye sockets in proper position with titanium bone plates bent to proper shape, ready for use in the operating room.

Facial Reconstructive Surgery

Either through accident or illness such as benign or malignant facial or jaw tumors, many patients can present with disfiguring and debilitating facial defects. Our doctors have a great deal of experience in facial and jaw reconstructive surgery for patients with these difficult problems. Such post traumatic or post tumor resection deformities often require extensive soft tissue and bone graft reconstruction to replace missing anatomic structures and restore function.

Facial Reconstructive Surgery
Pre-Operative 3-D CAT scan showing extent of forehead defect.
Facial Reconstructive Surgery
Post-operative 3-D CAT scan showing reconstructed forehead defect.

Oral and Maxillofacial surgeons, such as our doctors offer a unique perspective as they are as much concerned with excellent function as well as the overall aesthetic appearance of the face and jaws of their patients. The doctors are well versed in the latest technology available for facial reconstructive surgery. Such techniques include craniofacial implants which utilizes techniques learned from years of placing dental implants to actually replace missing parts of the facial anatomy (i.e. ears, nose and eyes).