What Is The Best Material To Use For Correcting The Flat Spot On The Back Of My Head?

Q:  Dr. Eppley, I have a flat spot on the back of my head that I would like corrected. It is at the back of the crown of my head and it gives me a funny looking head. I have attached pictures and have drawn on them the shape that I would like to have. Can you tell me I how this can be corrected? What material and how would it be placed? What is the recovery after this type of operation?

A: Having done quite a few occipital cranioplasty procedures for skull flattening that looks just like yours, I would recommend PMMA. This is because it will take about 40 to 60 grams of material to create the desired effect. PMMA offers the most cost effective material when it comes to this amount of cranioplasty augmentation. Other material options include HA (hydroxyapatite) and Kryptonite but they will cost anywhere from 3x to 5X more in terms of material cost, that can add thousands of dollars to operative costs. The procedure would be done through an open approach through a low horizontal incision on the back of the head, where hair loss is not likely to ever occur. This is done as an outpatient procedure done under general anesthesia with an operating time of approximately 90 minutes. There is actually very minimal recovery afterwards other than some non-visible swelling on the back of the head. Occipital cranioplasty is a much simpler procedure to go through than most people envision.

Dr. Barry Eppley

Indianapolis, Indiana