Cleft Lip and Palate

These are the most common congenital anomalies of the head and face. Babies born with this condition may have a gap in the upper lip as well as the roof of the mouth known as the palate. Some babies have both cleft lip and palate or just a cleft palate.

Cleft lip and/or palate can interfere with speech, hearing and facial growth. They can make breastfeeding and bottlefeeding difficult.  Our multidisciplinary team works together to provide the best care for your child. Click here to learn more about our cleft palate team.

Our expert cleft lip and palate team includes a long-tenured group of specialists who collaborate to create the best outcome for your child. Our experienced team includes Dr. Muzaffar, a nurse coordinator, speech-language pathologists, otolaryngologists (ear, nose and throat specialists), and orthodontists. Our program has received accreditation by the American Cleft Palate Craniofacial Association.

Types of Cleft Lip:

  •    Unilateral cleft lip: Cleft occurs on only one side of the upper lip

  • Bilateral cleft lip: Cleft occurs on both sides of the upper lip

  • Complete cleft: Cleft causes a gap from the lip and mouth into the nose

  • Incomplete cleft: The gap doesn't extend from the mouth into the nose

  • Microform cleft: A very minor incomplete cleft that causes a groove or notch rather than full gap

The Procedure

Dr. Muzaffar and the team will develop an individualized treatment plan for your baby. Multiple surgeries during infancy, childhood and adolescence are often required to effectively treat cleft lip and palate. 

Surgeries may include:

  • Initial repair of the lip and nose within your baby's first six months

  • Repair of the palate by age 12 to 18 months

  • Repair to the gum line between age 7 and 9

  • Jaw surgery during the mid to late teen years

  • Nasal surgery (rhinoplasty) in the teen years

Your child will stay one or two nights in the hospital after surgery. As your child starts school, Dr. Muzaffar may perform "touch up" surgery on the lip and/or nose. Some children also need additional surgery on their palate to improve speech. 

Contact Us

To schedule a consultation or to request more information please fill out this form and one of our team members will be in touch with you or please call us at (217) 214-6256. To learn more about our plastic and reconstructive services click here.