Bite force and electromyography evaluation after cranioplasty in patients with craniosynostosis

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Abstract

Objective.

This long-term follow-up investigation aimed to assess masticatory muscle function in 15 patients with craniosynostosis with detachment of the temporal muscle during fronto-orbital advancement 6 years after cranioplasty compared with a non-operative stomatognathic healthy cohort in the same age group (n = 25).

Study Design.

The follow-up assessment for the operated children occurred on average 5.2 ± 1.7 years after surgery at the age of 7 ± 1.6 years. The maximum bite force was assessed, in addition to the bilateral function of both temporal and masseter muscles, which were analyzed using superficial electromyography.

Results.

The maximum bite force was 257 ± 89 N 255 ± 88 N (right/left), respectively, in the group of operated children and 212 ± 61 N and 203 ± 57 N (right/left), respectively, in the control group, without clinical relevant difference between groups. The surface electromyography signal of the temporal muscle correlated positively with the bite force and showed a slightly lower average resting tone activity in the control group, whereas muscle fatigue occurred slightly faster in the operated children in both muscles without statistically significant difference between the 2 groups.

Conclusions.

There was no measurable dysfunction in the temporal muscle after the operative correction of craniosynostosis compared with a healthy population of children.

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