What is Plagiocephaly Or Flat Head Syndrome?


Plagiocephaly is a Greek word meaning oblique head, a child`s head which is asymmetrical or flattened.

The characteristics of Deformational Palgiocephaly are variable; the back of the head may be flat on one side; the ear on this side may be further forward; and there may be some flattening of the forehead on the opposite side. The diagnosis of Deformational Palgiocephaly is usually made by physical examination of the head. Sometimes an x-ray of the head is needed to exclude other more serious causes of the cranial deformity e.g. craniosynostosis – which may require surgical treatment.


The incidence of Deformational Palgiocephaly ranges from between 5% – 48% of healthy newborn babies. One of the causes can be compressive forces against the soft developing bones of the baby’s head before birth – this may the case with twins or as a result of an early descent into the pelvis. During the process of birth, excessive forces may also lead to deformity of the cranium. Excessive pressure on one part of the head may also occur as a result of tight neck muscle – an imbalance of head position known as Torticollis. In addition, babies spending a long time with the backs of their heads in contact with cot mattress, car seats and buggies may also be at risk. The “back to sleep” programme recommended by many paediatricians in the US in the 1990s, which encourages parents to lie babies on their backs to reduce the chances of SIDS (Sudden Infant Death Syndrome), has also seen an significant increase in the number of infants with Deformational Palgiocephaly.


Two types of treatment can help, Tummy Time, and for moderate to severe plagiocephaly; orthotic management.

Tummy Time: This play`s a very important part for young babies, many babies can develop a flat head from laying on their backs for long lengths of time during the day. Although often temporary, this condition, called positional plagiocephaly, this can often be prevented by positioning the baby on their tummy a couple of times during the day, this should last about 10 to 20 minutes at a time.

Leave a Reply

Next Post

Roof Rack - Advantages and Disadvantages of Carriers

Do you happen to see bars attached on top of vehicles? That is a roof rack that gives extra storage and permits safe transfer of bulky items like luggage and large containers. It could also support the transport of sports equipments like bicycle, canoes, skis and others. If you are […]

You May Like