The unilateral cleft lip repair

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American journal of otolaryngology


OBJECTIVE: To determine if there is a benefit of 2-stage cleft lip repair in regard to improving facial symmetry and facilitating definitive lip, nose, and palate repair.

STUDY DESIGN: Retrospective chart review of patients born with complete, unilateral cleft lip deformity that underwent a two-stage repair described as a stage 1 straight line repair and a stage 2 modified Millard repair, for which a complete set of records, and peri-operative and post-operative photos were available. All cases were performed by a single surgeon.

SETTING: Tertiary care center craniofacial team.

METHODS: Measurements were taken from intraoperative, perioperative, and postoperative images of patients before and after each stage. Ratios were then created comparing the affected size to the unaffected side, and these were averaged between observers.

RESULTS: A 19% increase in the width of area of the presumptive C flap was obtained between the unrepaired and the post-stage I images. The nostril width of the cleft side was 1.2× the width of the unaffected side, demonstrating a 140% decrease in nostril width at the completion of stage II. The cleft side nostril width was maintained slightly larger than the noncleft side as desired. Symmetry of the upper lip length was achieved, as the length of the cleft side lateral lip after stage II was 92% of the unaffected side.

CONCLUSION: We believe this study provides evidence for our observations that a two-stage repair can be performed with functionally and aesthetically pleasing outcomes as an alternative to presurgical nasoalveolar molding.

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