Children with multiple prematurely fused cranial sutures and those undergoing surgical correction later in life appear to experience worse neurocognitive outcomes, but it is unclear whether higher intracranial pressure (ICP) is implicated in this process. The purpose of this study was to elucidate the effect of age at intervention and number of involved cranial sutures on ICP, as well as to assess which cranial suture closure may be more associated with elevated ICP.
The prospective craniofacial database at the authors’ institution was queried for patients undergoing initial corrective surgery for craniosynostosis in whom intraoperative measurement of ICP was obtained prior to craniectomy. Age, involved sutures, and syndromic status were analyzed in the context of measured ICP by using multiple linear regression.
Fifty patients met the inclusion criteria. Age at procedure (p = 0.028, β = +0.060 mm Hg/month) and multiple-suture involvement (p = 0.010, β = +4.175 mm Hg if multisuture) were both significantly implicated in elevated ICP. The actual number of major sutures involved was significantly correlated to ICP (p = 0.001; β = +1.687 mm Hg/suture). Among patients with single-suture involvement, there was an overall significant difference of median ICP across the suture types (p = 0.008), with metopic having the lowest (12.5 mm Hg) and sagittal having the highest (16.0 mm Hg). Patients with multiple-suture involvement had significantly higher ICP (p = 0.003; 18.5 mm Hg). Patients with craniofacial syndromes were 79.3 times more likely to have multiple-suture involvement (p < 0.001). Corrective surgery for craniosynostosis demonstrated significant intraoperative reduction of elevated ICP (all p < 0.050).
Syndromic status, older age at intervention for craniosynostosis, and multiple premature fusion of cranial sutures were associated with significantly higher ICP.