- Cranioplasty is the surgical repair of a bone defect in the skull that's left behind after a previous operation or injury. There are different kinds of cranioplasties, but most involve lifting the scalp and restoring the contour of the skull with the original skull piece or a custom contoured graft made from material such as
- Titanium (plate or mesh)
- Synthetic bone substitute
- Acrylic (prefabricated or molded at the time of surgery)
What happens during a cranioplasty?
- In the operating room, you are given a general anesthetic. Once you are asleep, the team positions you so the surgeons have optimal access to the bone defect. The area of the incision is then shaved and prepared with antiseptic, and you are protected by drapes that leave only the surgical area exposed.
- You will get a local anesthetic, and the surgeon will carefully cut the skin of your scalp and gently separate it into layers thereby protecting the dura, which covers the brain. The team cleans the edges of surrounding bone and prepares the surface so the bone or implant can be positioned properly in the defect, after which it is secured to the cranial bones with screws, plates or both.
- With the bone or implant in place, bleeding is controlled and the team moves the scalp back to its original position and closes the incision with nylon suture. You may also have a small suction drain left in place to help remove any excess fluid. The drain will be removed in just a few days.
What is the Cost of Cranioplasty?
- Cranioplasty will cost approx to 2 lakhs
Which doctor to be consulted for cranioplasty?
1. Why might a doctor recommend Cranioplasty?
- Cranioplasty might be performed for any of the following reasons:
- Protection: In certain places, a cranial defect can leave the brain vulnerable to damage.
- Function: Cranioplasty may improve neurological function for some patients.
- Aesthetics: A noticeable skull defect can affect a patient's appearance and confidence.
- Headaches: Cranioplasty can reduce headaches due to previous surgery or injury.
2. What are the risks associated with Cranioplasty?
- As in the case of any surgery, you should discuss the risks with your surgeon, including (but not limited to) the following:
- Infection (which may need to be treated with antibiotics)
- Post-operative blood clot requiring drainage
- Clot in the legs (which rarely can travel to the lungs)
- Complication not related directly to the surgery:
3. What does a doctor needs to know before Cranioplasty?
- If you have any health problems, including blood clotting conditions
- If you are taking blood thinners such as warfarin, aspirin or anti-inflammatory drugs
- If you have any allergies to any medications or other substances