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Influence of the primary cleft palate closure on the future need for orthognathic surgery in unilateral cleft lip and palate patients.
Journal of Craniofacial Surgery
The aim of the study was to determine the influence of the dissection of the palate during primary surgery and the type of orthognathic surgery needed in cases of unilateral total cleft. The review concerns 58 children born with a complete unilateral cleft lip and palate and treated between 1994 and 2008 at the appropriate age for orthognathic surgery. This is a retrospective mixed-longitudinal study. Patients with syndromes or associated anomalies were excluded. All children were treated by the same orthodontist and by the same surgical team. Children are divided into 2 groups: the first group includes children who had conventional primary cleft palate repair during their first year of life, with extensive mucoperiosteal undermining. The second group includes children operated on according to the Malek surgical protocol. The soft palate is closed at the age of 3 months, and the hard palate at 6 months with minimal mucoperiosteal undermining. Lateral cephalograms at ages 9 and 16 years and surgical records were compared. The need for orthognathic surgery was more frequent in the first than in the second group (60% vs 47.8%). Concerning the type of orthognathic surgery performed, 2- or 3-piece Le Fort I or bimaxillary osteotomies were also less required in the first group. Palate surgery following the Malek procedure results in an improved and simplified craniofacial outcome. With a minimal undermining of palatal mucosa, we managed to reduce the amount of patients who required an orthognathic procedure. When this procedure was indicated, the surgical intervention was also greatly simplified.
Cleft lip and palate, primary palate closure, orthognathic surgery, maxillary growth, facial growth, repair
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