Neural Exam - Newborn head shape and sutures

From Embryology
Newborn n 27.jpg
This 5-day-old infant is in the alert, quiet state.
  • The head should be closely inspected as part of the neurological examination.
  • There can be molding of the head, which is an expected finding in a newborn.
  • Palpate the sutures and outline the anterior and posterior fontanelles.

Computed Tomography Views

Skull CT Vertex, later and basal views.[1]

Skull CT normal sutures.jpg

Sutures and Fontanels

  • a - Metopic suture
  • b - coronal sutures
  • c - sagittal suture
  • d - lambdoid suture
  • e - squamosal suture
  • f - anterior fontanel
  • g - posterior fontanel
  • h - sphenoidal fontanel
  • i - mastoid fontanel


  1. Paritosh C Khanna, Mahesh M Thapa, Ramesh S Iyer, Shashank S Prasad Pictorial essay: The many faces of craniosynostosis. Indian J Radiol Imaging: 2011, 21(1);49-56 PubMed 21431034 | PMC3056371 | Indian J Radiol Imaging.

Neural Exam Movies: normal behaviour | cranial nerves | Newborn Tone - resting posture | upper extremity‎ | arm traction | arm recoil | scarf sign | hand position | lower extremity | leg traction‎ | leg recoil‎‎ | popliteal angle‎ | heel to ear | neck tone | head lag‎ | head control | Newborn Positions - prone | ventral suspension | vertical suspension | Newborn Reflexes - deep tendon reflexes | plantar reflex‎ | suck, root | Moro | Galant | stepping‎ | grasp | Newborn Head - head shape and sutures‎ | head circumference‎ | Neonatal Diagnosis


Movie Source - Paul D. Larsen  
Movies from the PediNeuroLogic Exam website are used by permission of Paul D. Larsen, M.D., University of Nebraska Medical Center and Suzanne S. Stensaas, Ph.D., University of Utah School of Medicine. Additional materials were drawn from resources provided by Alejandro Stern, Stern Foundation, Buenos Aires, Argentina; Kathleen Digre, M.D., University of Utah; and Daniel Jacobson, M.D., Marshfield Clinic, Wisconsin. The movies are licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommerical-ShareAlike 2.5 License.
Links: Neural Exam Movies | Movies



Cite this page: Hill, M.A. (2018, August 21) Embryology Neural Exam - Newborn head shape and sutures. Retrieved from https://embryology.med.unsw.edu.au/embryology/index.php/Neural_Exam_-_Newborn_head_shape_and_sutures

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© Dr Mark Hill 2018, UNSW Embryology ISBN: 978 0 7334 2609 4 - UNSW CRICOS Provider Code No. 00098G