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The Portland hospital

Craniofacial Surgery

The speciality of craniofacial surgery involves the treatment of skull and facial deformities arising from birth defects or trauma as well as a number of acquired conditions. The London Children’s Craniofacial Group, based at The Portland Hospital for Women and Children, has been founded by two of the UK’s leading Craniofacial Surgeons, Mr David Dunaway and Mr Owase Jeelani, both of whom are clinical lead consultants NHS posts at Great Ormond Street Hospital for Children.

Because craniofacial and maxillofacial referrals are usually complex and often require input from many specialists, The London Children’s Craniofacial Group has a dedicated craniofacial fellow who supports the surgeons and co-ordinates all aspects of the patient’s care amd surgery with the relevant specialists.  This intensive case management approach provides a coordinated, multidisciplinary approach to craniofacial care and rehabilitation as well as continuity of care for the patient and their families.

The multidisciplinary team includes plastic surgeons, neurosurgeons, neurologists, dentists, ENT specialists, ophthalmologists, audiologists, geneticists, speech & language therapists, and psychologists.  The group also has a dedicated consultant neuroradiologist, consultant anaesthetist and clinical nurse specialist.    

Craniofacial patients will be cared for at The Portland Hospital in London which has three state of the art theatres and a paediatric unit which is equipped with advanced medical technology and facilities including a modern 128-slice CT scanner. In order to manage the complex craniofacial cases there is also a 7-bedded Paediatric Intensive Care Unit with dedicated staff assigned to the children under their care.

The children's care unit offers a comfortable, calm and reassuring ‘home from home’ environment to accommodate any length of stay with en-suite children’s rooms which can accommodate a parent to say with their child overnight.

How does the Craniofacial Surgery Program Work?

Patients referred to The London Children’s Craniofacial Surgery Group will have a consultation with one or both of the surgeons who will then provide a medical opinion and recommend which specialists the patient will need to see.  A comprehensive care plan will be put together which will be overseen by the consultant and dedicated craniofacial fellow.

If the patient already has a medical report this will be reviewed by the craniofacial surgeon in advance of the initial consultation and a medical opinion submitted to the referrer before the first consultation.

To minimise the waiting time of craniofacial surgery referrals, we aim to book outpatient appointments with all the required specialists in the same week of the patient’s initial consultation. Patients with complex craniofacial needs will receive a multi disciplinary pre-operative assessment in an outpatient setting with the entire craniofacial team prior to surgery. The surgeon managing the case will then send a full report to the referrer summarising all medical opinions and results and will provide a comprehensive treatment plan. 

What are the advantages of having craniofacial surgery at The Portland Hospital?

First and foremost, the best craniofacial and maxillofacial treatment outcome is achieved for the patient as they will have all their appointments coordinated as well as having medical reports from a single consultant to summarise the findings and advise on the management plan of the patient.

For those patients having complex surgery and requiring rehabilitation, this will be provided at The Acute Inpatient Neurological Rehabilitation Unit at the Portland Hospital. The Portland Hospital’s Paediatric Rehabilitation Unit for Children and Young People is purpose built and all of the facilities have been adapted to meet the needs of this specialist service. Please see our separate Neurological Rehabilitation Brochure for more information on the unit.

As part of the package of craniofacial treatment services offered for patients we can arrange outreach clinics where the primary consultants involved can follow up patients previously seen, along with assessing and advising on new cases to be sent to London for treatment.

An arrangement has been agreed with all craniofacial and maxillofacial specialists involved in the case management service. Therefore, a consultant could see a patient even if his clinic is fully booked.

The length of stay is significantly shorter than it would otherwise be without a case management program. In addition the clinical outcome is significantly improved as the treatment plan is coordinated through a multidisciplinary specialist approach overseen by a leading surgeon.

Overall the experience for patients and their carers will be a positive one with excellent clinical outcomes, specialist rehabilitation, shorter stays and outstanding hospital facilities.

The philosophy of care for the child with a craniofacial condition is to provide a seamless and comprehensive multidisciplinary service that addresses both the equally important functional, aesthetic and psychological aspects of the conditions seen by the group.

Conditions treated include:

• Single suture synostosis
• Aperts syndrome
• Crouzons syndrome
• Saethre-Chotzen syndrome
• Pfeiffers syndrome
• Hemifacial microsomias
• Midfacial clefts
• Facial morphea
• Post-radiotherapy facial deformity
• Treacher-Collins
• Goldenhar/hemifacial microsomia
• Plagiocephaly
• Brachycephaly
• Craniofronto-nasal dysplasia
• Encephalocele
• Facial clefts/cleftpalate and cleft lip

Please contact 020 7390 8020 from 9am - 5pm for further information.

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