A craniofacial surgeon corrects deformities of the face and skull. Craniofacial dentistry is a subspecialty of plastic and reconstructive surgery, oral and maxillofacial surgery, and ENT (Ear, Nose, and Throat) care that deals with congenital and acquired deformities. It does not include brain or eye surgery. Craniofacial surgeons are doctors who have completed special fellowships following their residencies in oral and maxillofacial surgery, plastic and reconstructive surgery, or ENT surgery. There is no specific board for craniofacial surgery, and training fellowships are generally found in major academic centers.
In the past, facial surgery on the skull was divided into multiple operations. Today, doctors combine procedures so that the patient undergoes as few surgeries as possible. Craniofacial surgeons strive to provide conservative, effective treatments. Common types of craniofacial surgeries include:
- Lip and cleft palate
- Pierre Robin Syndrome
- Miller Syndrome
- Facial cleft
- Facial palsy
- Frontonasal Dysplasia
- Acute and chronic sequel of facial fractures
As with all forms of oral surgery, the goal of craniofacial surgery is to improve the function, health, and appearance of your orofacial region, including your teeth and jaw. Although craniofacial treatment often involves manipulation of bone, it is not tissue specific, and may deal with bone, skin, nerve, muscle, and teeth.