Craniosynostosis | Symptoms & Causes

What are the symptoms of craniosynostosis?

Symptoms of craniosynostosis may vary, depending on which sutures in the skull are involved and how advanced the condition is when it’s diagnosed.

The most common signs of craniosynostosis include:

  • an unusually shaped head or face
  • asymmetrical appearance of the head or skull (one side of the face or top of the head looks different than the other side)
  • an enlarged head or skull
  • a bulging fontanelle ( the “soft spot” at the top of a newborn’s skull)
  • bulging eyes

If untreated, craniosynostosis can cause more serious symptoms in some children, including:

  • developmental delays
  • problems with learning, memory, speech and communication
  • visual disturbance
  • severe nausea and vomiting

Are there other conditions that cause similar symptoms?

Many infant skull shape irregularities are actually due to a condition called plagiocephaly, which is caused by a baby’s position during sleep. Plagiocephaly is a common disorder, and does not require surgery. Your clinician can help diagnose which condition your child has.

What are the causes of craniosynostosis?

Experts often cannot identify what causes craniosynostosis. In most cases, it appears to happen randomly. Increasingly, a genetic cause is identified.