WHAT IS CLEFT LIP PALATE?
Cleft lip palate is a common birth defect seen in @1 in 900 births.
Here, there is a discontinuity in the upper lip and/or the palate, in various combinations. There can be an isolated cleft lip or lips plus the upper jaw, or lips, teeth and the palate as a whole which is the complete variety.
Though emotionally very traumatic to the parents, with proper and timely intervention by well-trained plastic surgeons, these deformities can be corrected with minimal residual disabilities.
Cleft lip palate surgery
Usually a cleft lip or palate child is operated at 3 months of age, when he has attained weight of at least 6 kg’s, with a hemoglobin of @ 10 gm%.
The cleft lip in palate is repaired at the age of 13 – 14 months before the child starts speaking.
Once the child is older he may require bone grafting for the alveolus at 8 – 10 years of age and a nose correction at 18-20 years of age.
Children with cleft lip palate may have to undergo speech therapy sometimes to help them attain normal speech.
Presently, we at Bangalore hospital are involved in the “SMILE TRAIN PROJECT”, providing free cleft surgeries to the poor and deserving patients. Dr.Surindher and his board certified surgeons have performed more than 1500 cleft surgeries under this project in the last 8 years. This project is funded by the SMILE TRAIN Organization, based in the USA. For more details and for donations please visit their site www.smiletrain.org.