The Effect of Midface Advancement Surgery on Obstructive Sleep Apnoea in Syndromic Craniosynostosis

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Children with syndromic craniosynostosis frequently suffer from obstructive sleep apnoea (OSA). The aim of the authors’ study was to investigate if midface advancement surgery for patients with SC improved the severity of OSA by examining the results of sleep studies before and after surgery.


A retrospective comparison of the pre and postoperative sleep study data of children undergoing midface advancement surgery at Great Ormond Street Hospital between 2007 and 2016.


A total of 65 children underwent midface advancement surgery between 2007 and 2016 at Great Ormond Street Hospital and had recorded pre- and postoperative sleep studies. Thirteen patients were excluded from the analysis as their sleep study techniques before and after surgery were not comparable (e.g., different conditions with prong/continuous positive airway pressure use). Fifty-six percent of the patients were treated by monobloc surgery and the remainder with bipartition surgery. A greater proportion of patients had a normal OSA grading following midface advancement (42.3% postoperatively vs. 23.1% preoperatively, P = 0.059) although no statistically significant categorical changes in OSA grade were observed. Seventy-one percent of the patients had a decrease in Apnoea-Hypopnoea Index after surgery (21 patients 2011 onward). Similarly, there was no significant change in median oxygen desaturation index or in oxygen saturation nadir following surgery.


The authors report one of the largest reviews of the effects of midface advancement surgery on sleep study parameters. Most patients showed improvements in Apnoea-Hypopnoea Index and OSA grading, although measures of oxygenation showed no consistent change.

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