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Pierre Robin Syndrome is a skeletal defect of the face that causes an underdevelopment of the jaw (micrognathia) and a cleft palate, with resultant difficulty feeding, and breathing due to the tongue being pushed back into the throat. Babies therefore require assistance with breathing and eating, and eventually need surgery to correct the defects. Oral and Maxillofacial surgeons, specialists in mouth and face operations, have developed a new form of surgery to treat those with small jaw syndrome, called jaw distraction osteogenesis. For jaw distraction osteogenesis, titanium rods are placed into the jaw bone during surgery to allow daily lengthening of the jaw bone over a period of several weeks in order for the jaw to achieve a 'normal' length. This operation and ongoing therapy supersedes the need for the child to have a feeding tube in their stomach, and a tracheostomy, a opening in the baby's neck, permitting them to breathe.
Source: summary of medical news story as reported by Newswise
About: New surgical treatment for Small Jaw Syndrome
Date: 7 December 2005
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