When is the best time to do surgery for cleft lip and palate?
Most times, cleft palate repair is done when the child is older, between 9 months and 1 year old. This allows the palate to change as the baby grows. Doing the repair when the child is this age will help prevent further speech problems as the child develops.
When is a cleft palate surgery needed?
Cleft palate repairs are usually done between the ages of 9 to 18 months, but before the age of 2. This is a more complicated surgery and is done when the baby is bigger and better able to tolerate the surgery. The exact timing of the surgery will be decided by your child’s physician.
Is cleft palate surgery necessary?
That varies from patient to patient. At the minimum, one surgery is needed to repair the lip and a separate surgery is needed to repair the palate. However, several surgeries are needed to make the lip appear as normal as possible. And sometimes additional surgeries involving the palate are needed to improve speech.
Is cleft lip or palate repaired first?
Cleft lip repair
When both defects are present, this surgery comes first and usually takes place when a baby is about 3 months old.
Is cleft surgery painful?
Some pain is normal after palate repair. Your surgeon and medical team will work together to achieve the best pain control possible, but your child may still experience discomfort.
How long is surgery for cleft palate?
This surgery usually takes between 2 to 6 hours, depending on the type of cleft palate repair your child needs. Your child will stay overnight for at least 1 day after the surgery.
How much does a cleft palate surgery cost?
Typical costs: Without health insurance, cleft lip and/or palate surgery typically costs $5,000 to $10,000 or more per surgery; if the child has both a cleft lip and a cleft palate, two surgeries typically are required for a total of $10,000 to $20,000.
Can a cleft palate close on its own?
Though the condition is similar to cleft lip, it can exist on its own. Cleft palate repair surgery takes place in an operating room with the infant under general anesthesia. The surgeon makes incisions on both sides of the cleft, then rotates the muscles and tissues, and brings them together to close the cleft.
Does cleft palate affect speech?
Children born with cleft palate may have a delay in the beginning of speech and development of speech sounds. In addition, children with cleft palate may produce speech errors that are directly related to clefting.
How can I improve my cleft palate speech?
The main goals to help children with “cleft palate speech” are to:
- Establish correct articulation (placement, manner, and voicing) using articulation therapy techniques.
- Ensure there is good oral pressure during sound production.
- Establish new motor speech patterns that replace speech sound errors.