How Can My Son’s Indented Skull Deformity And Scalp Scars Be Improved?

Q: Dr. Eppley, I would like to inquire about options that are available to fix the dent in my son’s head which is the result of a head injury and subsequent cranioplasty surgery. I am also interested in having his scar removed if possible. Please let me know if this is something you can help with?

A: Thank you for your inquiry and sending your son’s pictures. I am going to assume that the prior cranioplasty surgery was a craniotomy bone flap which has subsequently sunken in as it healed. (meaning there is a stable base of bone albeit with less than the desired contour) To achieve both objectives, skull contour restoration and reduction of the scalp scars, requires a combination of scalp expansion (first stage scalp expander placement) and 2nd stage onlay skull reconstruction/augmentation to build out the skull contour. Two stages are necessary as expanding the skull contour without more scalp tissue to cover it will not result in less of a scar appearance. Conversely excising the scars can only be done at the same time if the skull contour is only improved slightly.

Dr. Barry Eppley

Indianapolis, Indiana