Strip Craniectomy (Suturectomy)

What is Strip Craniectomy (Suturectomy)?

A strip craniectomy (suturectomy) is a surgical procedure where doctors open the scalp to expose closed cranial sutures. Doctors then cut out these sutures to allow the brain to expand and push the skull bones out. This is one of the oldest types of surgeries for craniosynostosis, but we use it rarely because long-term results are not desirable. Today, we only use this surgery in very young patients (birth to 4 months old) with a fused suture or signs of increased pressure on the brain.

This is mostly done in patients with syndromic craniosynostosis. In these cases, patients can benefit from removing of the closed sutures to let the brain and skull to expand. Typically, another surgery is done to ensure the patient's head maintains a healthy shape, around ages 6-12 months, after thickening of the skull has occurred.