When Cooper Errickson grows up, he most likely won’t remember what his first year of life looked like. He may not realize it, but he empowered families just like his, all at the age of one.
It started with his parents noticing a flattening on one side of Cooper’s head when he was a newborn. They tried all the recommendations their pediatrician provided, but nothing was helping.
Their next step? Contacting the experts at Ability Prosthetics and Orthotics in York, PA to develop a real solution.
Expert Guidance From an Expert Practitioner
Marlies Cabell one of Ability’s American Board Certified Prosthetist Orthotists (CPOs), met with the Errickson family and soon put their minds at ease. Her breadth of experience in infant cranial deformities — including pagiocephaly (asymmetric head fusions), brachycephaly (symmetric occipital head flattening), and craniosynostosis (premature skull suture fusions) — reassured Cooper’s family that the path forward would be a successful one.
Using 3D Scanning Technology, Cabell provided the Erricksons with clinical research, digitally scanned head measurements, and a treatment plan to correct Cooper’s asymmetrical head shape with a cranial remolding orthosis “Aviator” helmet.
The Power of Early Intervention
While the orthosis is essential, early intervention (between three and eight months of age) allows the orthosis to direct cranial growth toward greater symmetry and proportion for an infant’s head, the same way it did for Cooper.
But beyond acting fast, family empowerment is an essential part of treatment in young children.
The Ability team provides families like Cooper’s with the clinical support needed to make important treatment decisions for their child.
“Infants are just starting out. They’ve only been three or four months in the world. I can’t predict their futures, but I want to give them the best outcomes,” explains Marlies.
And there’s no doubt that these treatment decisions were difficult ones for the Erricksons. “You have this newborn blessing in your family, and you notice an issue, and you’re thinking, ‘What do we do,’” says Doug, Cooper’s father.
“But everyone at Ability was compassionate and supportive from the get-go, reassuring us that the outcome will be worth it.”