Q: Dr. Eppley, I am a little nervous about a cranial reshaping/augmentation procedure so if you don’t mind I have some questions regarding it. Does this type of surgery come with a high risk of complications/ what are the complications? From the location of my indentation can you give me a general idea of how big and where the location of the scar would be? How long would an open approach surgery take to correct my indentation/ how long would recover time take? How much would this surgery cost roughly? If my research is correct I understand their are different methods/ materials that can be used with an open approach can you explain them? and the pros/cons of them? What method would you recommend?
A: In answer to your questions. This is not a high-risk procedure. There are no major complications that I have ever seen. The complications are of the aesthetic nature, meaning how does it look, is it smooth, etc. You need access to both sides of the skull. There fore the incision would be bicoronal, meaning it would go across the top of the head just about from one ear to the other. Surgical time for this procedure is 2 hours. Your recovery would be very quick, so swelling but no significant pain and no real restrictions after surgery other than strenuous physical contact. That information will be passed along by my assistant. The other decisions/options about an open approach is the choice of cranioplasty material. With large surface area to be covered like your cranial indentations, the PMMA (acrylic) is the most affordable. I am not sure what you mean by method. This would be an open cranioplasty with midline bone reduction and build up of the deficient sides.
Dr. Barry Eppley