Cleft Lip and Palate Treatment
Dr. Bussick was one of the founding members of the Kids First Clinic in Fort Wayne, IN.
Oral clefting occurs when the tissues of the lip and/or palate of a fetus don’t grow together early in pregnancy. Children with clefts often don’t have enough tissue in their mouths, and the tissue they do have isn’t fused together properly to form the roof of their mouths.
A cleft lip appears as a narrow opening or gap in the skin of the upper lip 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 kids have clefts that extend through both the front and rear part of the palates, while others have only partial clefting.
The three common kinds of clefts are:
- cleft lip without a cleft palate
- cleft palate without a cleft lip
- cleft lip and cleft palate together
In addition, clefts can occur on one side of the mouth (unilateral clefting) or on both sides of the mouth (bilateral clefting).