Oral-facial clefts are birth defects in which the tissues of the Lips or palate don't form properly during fetal development. It is referred to as Hare Lip in lay man's terminology. Clefts occur in 1 in 600 to 1,000 births, making it the one of the most common major birth defects. Clefts occur more often in children of Asian, Latino, or Native American descent. The good news is that both cleft lip and cleft palate are treatable birth defects. Most kids who are born with these conditions can have reconstructive surgery within the first 12 to 18 months of life to correct the defect and significantly improve facial appearance. The Lip and anterior or fore part of Lip can be repaired when the child is at least three months of age. More than ten pounds of weight and having more than 10 grams of Hb or Hemoglobin. The rest or hind palate can be reconstructed when the child is 12 months of age before onset of speech.
What Is Lip Palate Clefting?
Clefting occurs when the tissues of the lip and/or palate of baby during development don't grow together early in pregnancy due to interference during development. There are many interfering factors. Children with clefts often t have deficient tissue in their mouths, and the tissue they do have is split thus in able to form the roof of their mouths or an intact lip.
A cleft lip appears as a gap in the upper lip tissues that extends all the way to the base of the nose. A cleft palate is an opening between the roof of the mouth and the nasal cavity. Some children have clefts that extend through both the front and rear part of the palates, while others have only partial clefting.There is generally three different kinds of clefts.
What Causes Oral Clefting?
It is believed that a combination of genetic (inherited) and factors (such as certain drugs, illnesses, deficiency of essential elements in the body, exposure to X-Ray's during first three months of pregnancy and the use of alcohol or tobacco while a woman is pregnant). The risk may be higher for kids whose children or parents have a cleft or who have a history of clefting in their families. Both mothers and fathers can pass on a gene or genes that cause cleft palate or cleft lip. Environmental factors like solar or lunar eclipse do not increase the incidence although people generally have belief it to be the common cause of Clefting.
Reconstructive surgery can repair cleft lips and palates, and in severe cases, plastic surgery can address specific appearance-related concerns. Surgery is usually performed during the first 12 to 18 months to repair cleft lip and/or cleft palate. Both types of surgery are performed in the hospital under general anesthesia. Patient may need Orthodontic Dental treatment after Surgical correction which involves a team of multiple disciplines. Child should have at least 10 grams Haemoglobin, 10 Pounds of weight, over 10 weeks of age at the time of Lip repair & should be declared fit for surgery by the anesthetist & Child specialist. Child may need few day's of hospitalization after surgery.
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