The clinical criteria for a unilateral lambdoid synostosis consist of an ipsilateral occipital flattening, a depressed ipsilateral ear lobe (inferior movement) and a parallelogram-like shape in the posterior view. All three of these signs were present in the eight synostotic infants. Furthermore, all children had developed a compensatory contralateral parietooccipital bulging that led to a slanted tree top-like shape of the head at follow-up. Normal posterior view (ie ears level) and anterior movement of the ear excludes LS [but photo looks like ipsi anterior movement in LS – is it contralat in PP??? No mention of anterior bossing, not obvious in photo].

German study – all LS cases obvious clinically. Where positional plagiocephaly was doubted, USS demonstrated patent sutures.

[Arch Dis Child 2015;100:152-157 doi:10.1136/archdischild-2014-305944]


Measure the oblique diameter left (ODL) and oblique diameter right (ODR) lines are drawn from points located 40° either side of the antero-posterior (AP) line. 40° is typically where deformation most notable.  Express as difference (the Oblique diameter difference (ODD) = ODL−ODR) or else ratio between the ODL and the ODR (oblique diameter difference index, or ODDI).

[European Journal of Pediatrics March 2006, Volume 165, Issue 3, pp 149-157]


Dutch RCT of 6 months of helmet therapy (n=84 infants aged 5 to 6 months with moderate to severe skull deformation, exclusions were prems, muscular torticollis, craniosynostosis, or dysmorphic features). Full recovery was achieved in 10 of 39 (26%) participants in the helmet therapy group and 9 of 40 (23%) participants in the natural course group (odds ratio 1.2, 95% confidence interval 0.4 to 3.3, P=0.74). All parents reported one or more side effects.

[van Wijk RM BMJ 2014; 348 (); g2741]

Some evidence for bedding pillows (but SUDI risk?) and stretching exercises.