Metopic Synostosis

What is Metopic Synostosis

An infant’s skull is not a solid structure early on. It is made up of a number of bony plates, joined together by fibers called sutures. The metopic suture is located at the front of the head where it separates the frontal bones of the skull.

This suture is here to allow the shape of the skull to grow and develop as the brain grows and develops. It is also the only suture that naturally closes sometime before the child turns two years old.

Metopic synostosis occurs when the metopic suture begins fusing too early. This condition can restrict the growth across the forehead which, in turn, can cause the skull to become a definite triangular shape and the eyes to seem too close together.

How We Treat Metopic Synostosis

At the Cleft & Craniofacial Institute of Utah, we can treat metopic synostosis through a surgical therapy that will correct the triangular shape of the forehead and create the necessary space in the anterior fossa, so the skull can develop regularly.

As part of this procedure, we will place bone grafts at the midline to widen the distance between the upper part of the eye orbits, which can address potential problems with hypotelorism (the eyes being too close together.

Similar Conditions

There is another condition known as “isolated metopic ridge,” which is not the same as true metopic synostosis. It’s important to distinguish between the two, though, because isolated metopic ridge does not require surgery.

Additional Information

Contact the Cleft & Craniofacial Institute of Utah today and we’ll be happy to consult with you and answer any questions you may have.

Our Expertise

Cleft Lip/Palate

 Cleft lips and palates are one of the most common birth anomalies that affect about 1/600 newborn babies in the United States and around 1/500 in the state of Utah.  Clefts can range from quite mild to fairly severe.  Most of the time they are an isolated anomaly, but are also associated with a number of gentic syndromes.  Depending on what structures are involved dictates the complexity of the treatment plan.   Our team works together with you to make a customized plan for  your baby.  Even the most severe of cases should be able to be treated with only a few surgical interventions by a well coordinated and efficient team.






The skull is made up of several different bones that are joined together by growth plates called "sutures."  Craniosynostosis is a condition where one or more of these sutures fuse prematurely causing an abnormal head shape, decreased cranial volume, and the possiblilty of raised intracranial pressure.  The treatment of craniosynostosis is surgical and the goals of surgery are to increase the volume of the skul and to correct the abnormal appearance of the head shape.  There are two methods of surgical correction: open vault reconstruction and strip craniectomy.  Dr. Griner's extensive training allows him to perform these complex procedures without the need for blood transfusions and spending only 1-2 nights in the hospital. 



There are many syndromes that can affect the shape of the head and face and include Aperts, Crouzon, Pfieffer, Treacher Collins, and many others.  Most of these syndromes include many other complex anomalies and need to be treated in a coordinated approach in order to reduce the number of operations the child will need.  These syndromes are rare and require specialists that are very familiar with the intricacies of each syndrome.  Dr. Griner's unique training provided him with extensive experience with craniofacial syndromes and makes him the premier choice to guide the management of your child's needs in Utah.





Ear Deformities

Ear deformities range from mild changes in shape to the complete abscence of an ear and deafness.  Mild deformities can be treated in the first few weeks of life while others will require reconstructive surgery and hearing aids.  No matter the severity, our specialists work together to provide normal appearance and improved hearing.


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