Success stories

Plagiocephaly and brachycephaly have both been successfully treated with helmets for many years. Discover some treatment success stories below – simply click a child’s name from the list on the left to view their story.

Lucia's story

Parent(s): Hannah and Petar

Location: London

When Lucia was born on 10 December 2003, she was perfect in every way. It was around two to three months later when Hannah noticed that her head looked a bit peculiar. However, she continued with her usual routine of placing Lucia at the same end of the cot every night, and was proud of her independent streak as she lay contentedly under her baby gym much longer than other babies. Little did she know that she was making Lucia's condition worse!

Hannah finally mentioned her concerns to her local GP at about five months, when Lucia's head shape really did look quite odd. He told her that she had plagiocephaly and would probably grow out of it, but would refer her to an NHS pediatrician for good measure.

Hannah did some research of her own on the internet and found that Lucia's plagio was caused by the position she had been sleeping in. It was apparently severe compared with the charts Hannah saw on the web, but fortunately could be treated by helmet therapy.

Spurred on by the lengthy wait on the NHS and the knowledge that timing is crucial when treating plagio, Hannah immediately swung into action. She later discovered that the condition was not widely known and that Lucia would have been unlikely to receive any NHS treatment.

A meeting was secured with a dedicated private specialist surgeon a week later, and Lucia was cast for her helmet the very same day. This was not without trauma – it is very hard to see your little baby in a great big helmet. It is far harder on the parents than on the child, who tends to adapt very well to their new 'hat'.

Lucia made amazing progress. Her asymmetry was 23mm, but she saw almost total correction within four months due to her young age. The difference in her looks is quite dramatic: she has no longer got the tell-tale prominent forehead and cheek on her left side, though her ears are not yet completely aligned.

Her parents are happy that she will be able to wear ordinary glasses and cycle helmets, and may avoid some of the complications such as jaw problems, but most of all they are happy that she has now got back the lovely round head with which she started life.

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