The goal of endoscopic treatment for craniosynostosis is to remove the fused suture and achieve calvarial remodeling with external orthosis. To reduce the need for secondary surgery and to minimize blood loss, instruments that maximize bone removal while minimizing blood loss and risk of dural injury are evolving. The authors therefore assess the safety and efficacy of the Sonopet Ultrasonic Bone Aspirator (UBA) (Stryker, Kalamazoo, MI) for endoscopic suturectomy compared to traditional instrumentation at our institution.
Retrospective chart review of consecutive endoscopic suturectomies performed from 2011 to 2019 at Weill Cornell Medical Center was conducted, including demographics, cephalic index, surgical indications, operative time, cosmetic and functional results, complications, estimated blood loss (EBL), re-operation rate, length of stay, and length of helmet therapy. These variables were then compared between the Sonopet and non-Sonopet cohorts.
Of the 60 patients who underwent endoscopic suturectomy, 16 cases (26.7%) utilized the Sonopet. Mean operative time was 2.8 ± 0.4 hours in the Sonopet group, compared to 3.2 ± 1.2 hours (P = 0.05) without the Sonopet. EBL was 17.8 ± 23.9 cc versus 34.7 ± 75.5 cc (P = 0.20) with versus without the Sonopet respectively. Length of stay and duration of helmet therapy were similar in both groups, ranging from 1 to 3 days (P = 0.68) and 7.25 to 12 months (P = 0.30) respectively. There were no reoperations in the Sonopet group with a mean follow up of 9.18 months. There were 3 reoperations in the non-Sonopet group with a mean follow up of 11.3 months. Among the cases utilizing the Sonopet, 13 (81%) were metopic and three (19%) were coronal synostoses. Of the non-Sonopet cases, 27 (61%) were sagittal, 8 (18%) were metopic, 7 (16%) were coronal, and 2 (5%) were lambdoid synostoses.
The use of the Sonopet resulted in a mean decrease in operative time at our institution (P = 0.18). Lower EBL and reoperation rates with comparable LOS and helmet therapy duration were also seen. This modality should be considered a safe and effective adjunct in appropriate endoscopic craniosynostosis cases.