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What is craniofacial surgery?

Craniofacial surgery can correct a birth defect or restore normal appearance after an accident or cancer treatment. Our team of specialists provides comprehensive and coordinated care for each patient.

How the Craniofacial Surgery is Performed

In some cases, surgeons will move soft tissue and bone from one part of the body to restore symmetry and normal appearance in the head or face. In other cases, man-made materials, like cheek or chin implants, are used.

Because birth defects and the effects of trauma and cancer are unique, the results of craniofacial surgery vary. Our surgeons work to meet the particular needs of each individual ranging from the smallest of imperfections to the most severe.

About Our Program

Penn Medicine's Division of Plastic Surgery is recognized for excellence in craniofacial surgery. Our doctors treat patients from around the world with problems ranging from the most routine to the most complex.

The craniofacial reconstruction program has an exemplary safety record. This is due in part to the experience of our world-class doctors, infrastructure of excellence and our multidisciplinary team.

What to Expect After Craniofacial Reconstruction

After craniofacial reconstruction, you can expect to have some swelling for up to three months while the wound heals. You will be given specific instructions to follow during recovery including how to care for the surgical site, medications to apply or take orally to aid healing and reduce the potential for infection, and specific concerns to look for.

Risks and Outcomes of Craniofacial Surgery

Every type of surgery has risks, but you can reduce the risk of complications by carefully following all instructions before and after surgery. The most common postsurgical problems are infections and scarring. Each, when identified and treated early, can be managed successfully.

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