What can be done ?
Cleft lip and cleft palate are correctable birth defects. Treatment of cleft begins within months of birth with corrective surgery, and continues in one form or another until the person reaches their late teens.
Primary surgery begins with the lip repair at about 3 or 4 months and palate repair between 6 and 12 months. Cosmetic surgery on the nose may occur before the child attends school. A corrective rhinoplasty may be performed on the nose in the teenage years. Orthodontic surgery begins with maxilla expansion at around 9 to 10 years followed by bone grafting. Further corrective surgery (an osteotomy) may be carried out at about 18 years.
Cleft lip and palate treatment involves a multidisciplinary team including a plastic surgeon, ENT surgeon, maxillofacial surgeon, orthodontist, and speech and language therapist.
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