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Craniofacial prosthesis

Craniofacial Prostheses are made by individuals trained in anaplastology who medically help rehabilitate those suffering from facial defects caused by disease (mostly progressed forms of skin cancer, and head and neck cancer), trauma (outer ear trauma, eye trauma) or birth defects (link to microtia, anophthalmia). The anaplastologist has the ability to replace almost any part of the face, but most commonly is the ear, nose or eye/eyelids. An ocular prosthesis and hair prosthesis can also be classified as craniofacial prostheses.

When surgical reconstruction is not ideal, craniofacial prosthetics are favored when they can better restore the form and function of the absent facial feature. Craniofacial prosthetics are not considered as cosmetic because they replace the physical form and functional mechanics of the absent anatomy and serve a significant role in the emotional stability and rehabilitation of those suffering from facial defects.

Surgeries which can include facial prostheses can be ones like

  • Maxillectomy - Removal of the upper jaw (maxilla) or the cheek bone, with or without orbital exenteration. As the palate or the roof of the mouth is lost the person wears a device called an obturator.
  • Enucleation - Removal of the eye, but the eyelids and other structures are left in place.
  • Orbital exenteration - Removal of the eye along with the eyelids and other structures.
  • Mandibulectomy - Removal of all or part of the mandible or the lower jaw

See also

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