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Longitudinal assessment of visual development in non-syndromic craniosynostosis: a 1-year pre- and post-surgical study
  1. G Vasco1,
  2. G Baranello1,
  3. D Ricci1,
  4. A Salerni2,
  5. G Tamburrini3,
  6. R Amante4,
  7. A Dickmann2,
  8. C Di Rocco3,
  9. F Velardi4,
  10. E Mercuri1
  1. 1
    Pediatric Neurology Unit, Catholic University, Rome, Italy
  2. 2
    Department of Ophthalmology, Catholic University, Rome, Italy
  3. 3
    Paediatric Neurosurgery, Catholic University, Rome, Italy
  4. 4
    Paediatric Neurosurgery, Pediatric Hospital “Bambino Gesù”, Rome, Italy
  1. Eugenio Mercuri, Neuropsichiatria Infantile, Policlinico Gemelli, Largo Gemelli, 00168 Roma; mercuri{at}


Objective: to investigate visual function pre- and post surgery in children with single-suture non-syndromic craniosynostosis

Design: Twenty-nine infants (12 with sagittal synostosis, 10 with trigonocephaly and 7 with anterior plagiocephaly) were longitudinally evaluated using a battery of tests assessing various aspects of visual function, including ocular behaviour, acuity, visual fields and fixation shift. All infants were assessed before surgery and 2, 6 and 12 months after surgery.

Results: Before surgery only 16% of infants had completely normal visual function, while on the assessment performed 12 months after surgery, the number with normal results on all the tests increased to 65%. The only abnormalities found 12 months after surgical correction were mainly found on abnormal oculomotor behaviour in infants with plagiocephaly.

Conclusion: Abnormalities of visual function were not frequent in infants with non-syndromic craniosynostosis who underwent surgical correction. Approximately half of the patients had some visual abnormalities before surgery, which subsequently improved, showing a delayed visual maturation rather than persistent abnormalities.

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  • Competing interests: None.

  • Ethics approval: The study was approved by the Research Ethical Committee of the Catholic University, Rome, Italy.