Craniofacial Abnormalities

Also known as: craniofacial anomalies, CFA, birth defects

What are craniofacial abnormalities?

Craniofacial is a broad medical term that describes abnormalities of the bones of the skull and face. The different abnormalities that can occur do so from different growth patterns of the face or skull and include some of the most common and rare birth defects that affect newborn babies (common; most infants with cleft lip/cleft palate- rare; Treacher Collins syndrome). They are also sometimes referred to as craniofacial anomalies.
 

What causes craniofacial abnormalities?

Frequently there is no single cause; instead researchers believe that some combination of genetic factors from one or both parents, environmental factors, such as exposure to harmful chemicals, and/or a deficiency of folic acid may play a role in the development of craniofacial abnormalities.
 

What are the symptoms of craniofacial abnormalities?

The symptoms of craniofacial abnormalities vary widely depending on what type of craniofacial abnormality is present. They can range from very mild,  to severe problems involving eye sight, hearing issues and/or learning disabilities.
 

What are craniofacial abnormality care options?

Treatments are available for many craniofacial abnormalities and will vary widely based on the nature of the condition. Some minor abnormalities require no medical treatment, while anomalies like cleft lip and palate can be repaired surgically. Some more serious craniofacial abnormalities may cause permanent damage, but treatments are still available that offer supportive care to the child and family. Nicklaus Children's Hospital has a full range of Specialists to provide the best care possible for all these infants.

Reviewed by: Jack Wolfsdorf, MD, FAAP

This page was last updated on: 3/17/2017 3:11:15 PM

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