• Infant's Oddly-shaped Head Turns Out to Be a Serious Medical Condition

    Craniosynostosis affects 1 in 2,000 live births
  • Have you heard of craniosynostosis? Though not well-known, this birth defect is surprisingly common and occurs in about one in every 2,000 live births. It is potentially life-threatening, and if left untreated could lead to brain damage or even death.

    Couple Megan and Michael Boler didn’t know their 2-month-old baby Matthew had it until it was discovered during a routine checkup. “I thought, 'Oh, gosh, we'd been talking about this since he was born, that his head was long,'” mom Megan said.

    Matthew Boler
    Photo from people.com

    Babies with craniosynostosis have unusually-shaped heads. This is because craniosynostosis is a condition where the skull is prematurely fused, leaving very little room for the brain to grow. Babies’ skulls need to be able to expand as their brains develop and become larger.

    Megan’s pediatrician told her that her son would need to see a neurosurgeon right away. “Any mom who hears the word 'neurosurgeon' for a child gets worried,” she said.

    According to PEOPLE, Dr. Sandi Lam, director of craniofacial surgery at Texas Children’s Hospital, diagnosed that Matthew did indeed have craniosynostosis. He would need an operation.

    Matthew underwent endoscopic surgery. His skull was opened along the sagittal suture and bits of overgrowth were removed as well.

    “It was one of the hardest things we've ever done,” said Megan “That feeling of handing your little baby over to an anesthetist was scary. We handed him over, said a prayer and went to the waiting room.”

    For a few days after his surgery, Matthew was swollen and inconsolable. But don’t underestimate a baby’s ability to bounce back, because as Megan recalled, “On the third day, he perked up, looked at his big sister and smiled.”

    Matthew Boler
    Photo from people.com

    After spending four months with a corrective helmet, and now eight months after surgery, Matthew is a normal and healthy baby boy.

    Read the full story on PEOPLE.com

    The Boler Family
    Pictured above is Megan with son Matthew and daughter Madeleine, 5
    Photo from people.com

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