Craniofacial morphological outcome following treatment with three different surgical protocols for complete unilateral cleft lip and palate: a premilinary study

M Kulewicz, Z Dudkiewicz
International Journal of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery 2010, 39 (2): 122-8
This study compared craniofacial morphology between three groups of children with complete unilateral cleft lip and palate, treated with different surgical protocols. The study included 66 10-year-old children (42 boys and 20 girls) with a complete unilateral cleft lip and palate (22 patients in each of the three groups). Children aged 7 months underwent one-stage surgery, performed by a single surgeon. During surgery, the soft and hard palate and the lip underwent correction. The difference between the groups depended on the hard palate closure. Group I patients had the mucoperiosteal flap elevated on both sides of the cleft. Group II patients had the mucoperiosteal flap elevated on the non-cleft side, and had only a minimal 2-3mm mucoperiosteal flap elevated on the cleft side. Group III patients had mucoperiostium elevated from the septum vomer to create a single-layered caudally pedicled flap, and had only a minimal 2-3mm palatal flap elevated on the cleft side. Craniofacial morphology was defined using lateral cephalometric analysis. Significant craniofacial morphological differences were identified between groups I, II and III. Group III demonstrated the most favourable morphology. This indicates that the technique of hard palate closure has significant influence on craniofacial growth and development.

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