The science behind the springs: Using biomechanics and finite element modeling to predict outcomes in spring-assisted sagittal synostosis surgery

Noor ul Owase Jeelani, Alessandro Borghi, Naiara Rodriguez Florez, Selim Bozkurt, David Dunaway, Silvia Schievano

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Citations (Scopus)
123 Downloads (Pure)


Spring-assisted surgery for the correction of scaphocephaly has gained popularity over the past 2 decades. Our unit utilizes standardized torsional springs with a central helix for spring-assisted surgery. This design allows a high degree of accuracy and reproducibility of the force vectors and force distance curves. In this manuscript, we expand on the biomechanical testing and properties of these springs. Standardization of design has enabled us to study the springs on bench and in vivo and a comprehensive repository of calvarial remodeling and spring dynamics has been acquired and analyzed. Finite element modeling is a technique utilized to predict the outcomes of spring-assisted surgery. We have found this to be a useful tool, in planning our surgical strategy and improving outcomes. This technique has also contributed significantly to the process of informed consent preoperatively. In this article, we expand on our spring design and dynamics as well as the finite element modeling used to predict and improve outcomes. In our unit, this practice has led to a significant improvement in patient outcomes and parental satisfaction and we hope to make our techniques available to a wider audience.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2074-2078
Number of pages5
JournalJournal of Craniofacial Surgery
Issue number7
Publication statusPublished (in print/issue) - 31 Oct 2020

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
The work has been funded by Great Ormond Street Hospital for Children Charity (grant number 12SG15), NIHR GOSH/UCL Biomedical Research Centre Advanced Therapies for Structural Malformations and Tissue Damage pump-prime funding call (grant number 17DS18), the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EP/N02124X/1) and the European Research Council (ERC-2017-StG-757923). This report incorporates independent research from the National Institute for Health Research Biomedical Research Centre Funding Scheme. The views expressed in this publication are those of the author(s) and not necessarily those of the NHS, the National Institute for Health Research or the Department of Health.

Publisher Copyright:
Copyright # 2020 by Mutaz B. Habal, MD


  • Biomechanics
  • Finite element modeling
  • Scaphocephaly
  • Spring
  • Spring-assisted surgery


Dive into the research topics of 'The science behind the springs: Using biomechanics and finite element modeling to predict outcomes in spring-assisted sagittal synostosis surgery'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this