Objective: The purpose of this study is to review the literature for possible methods in diagnosing, classifying, and monitoring deformational plagiocephaly and brachycephaly.
Methods: A search was conducted on articles through February 2014 in PubMed (Medline) and Google Scholar. Articles were included if they met the following criteria: (1) they were written in English or German; (2) they involved humans; (3) they were published in the last 10 years; (4) they had a primary research question about all possible methods for diagnosing, classifying, and monitoring deformational plagiocephaly and brachycephaly; and (5) an abstract was available.
Results: The search resulted in 58 articles. After the review, the number was reduced to 16. Of the 16 articles included, 9 were reliability studies on measurements of deformational plagiocephaly. Six measurement tools for diagnosing, classifying, and monitoring deformational plagiocephaly and brachycephaly were found: visual assessment, anthropometric measurements with a caliper, measurements with a flexicurve, plagiocephalometry, 3-dimensional photography, and radiological imaging.
Conclusion: This study found that visual assessment, flexicurve, anthropometric measurements with a caliper, and plagiocephalometry are useful measurements. At present, the plagiocephalometry and the anthropometric measurements with a caliper are more reliable methods than the visual assessment and the measurement with a flexicurve.
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