Cleft Lip Repair

Conveniently located to serve Minneapolis, St. Paul and Woodbury

cleft_lipParents in St. Paul, Minneapolis can count on Dr. James Hoffman to provide excellent cleft lip repair and the best care for their children who were born with a cleft lip. He has been treating kids and adults alike and he is among the best in his field, restoring a normal lip contour and function for his patients in his years of practice. A cleft lip is one of the most common birth defects and is a result of the incomplete formation of the upper lip during development in the womb. It is the separation of the 2 sides of the upper lips that results to a gap or opening in the skin of the upper lip. A cleft lip repair can easily address this condition to achieve a more normal appearance and to improve your child’s ability to eat, speak, and breathe.

Also called cheiloplasty, a cleft lip repair is not only done to our patients in St. Paul, Minneapolis to close the gap but is also performed to make sure that the child functions and grows normally. A cleft lip repair includes the closure of the cleft lip, the formation of the curve at the center of the lip, also known as Cupid’s bow, and alterations to create the proper distance between the upper lip and the nose. The changes made during a cleft lip repair will help the child’s normal speech development, help achieve a normal symmetry between the nostrils, and facilitate normal eating and breathing.

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Before & After
Before & After
* Individual results may vary.

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View before-and-after pictures of real patients of James A. Hoffman, M.D.

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The parents need to know that their child is not the only one with this deformity. Even though they may never have seen or know of a similar deformity, clefting is not uncommon. It is important to reassure the parents, and in particular the mother, that the cleft was not caused by anything they did during pregnancy. In the vast majority of cases, clefts are isolated and multifactorial in etiology. In the consultation we tell the parents there will be a team of specialists involved in the care of their child. I am involved in the Cleft Lip and Palate Team at St. Paul Children’s Hospital and also provide consultation service to the University of Minnesota Hospitals. We provide names and phone numbers of parents who have children with clefts who are willing to share their experiences.

What is involved in a cleft lip surgery?

Dr. James Hoffman advises parents in St. Paul, Minneapolis that a cleft lip repair depends on the individual circumstance of their child and may vary from person to person. Generally, cleft lip repair in our office in St. Paul, Minneapolis are performed when a child is about 8 weeks.

We are always available to see any child born with a cleft on the first day of life. The importance of reassurance provided by showing the parents before and after photographs of other children with clefts cannot be underestimated. We will also assist in teaching effective feeding techniques to the new mother and father.

Cleft lip repair is performed under general anesthesia for our patients in St. Paul, Minneapolis. For cleft lip repair, incisions will be made on the sides of the cleft in order to create a flap that will be drawn and stitched together to close the separation. The incision lines will not be very visible since it will be positioned along the normal contours of the upper lip and nose. As the child ages, the incision lines will fade and their ability to grow and function normally will significantly improve.

Depending on the extent of repair that is needed to correct the defect, a cleft lip repair in our St. Paul, Minneapolis office may take one or two surgeries to complete. If parents opt to have additional surgeries to be performed for our patients in St. Paul, Minneapolis, they would have to wait until the child reaches adolescence when the patient’s facial contours are fully developed.

In time, parents will see that the defect will not continue to dominate their lives. Their child will have the same sense of fun, mischief, and wonder as any other child. These parents will have the same hopes and dreams for their child born with a cleft as for any other child.

For more information on Cleft Lip Repair in Minneapolis – St. Paul, contact Dr. Hoffman today to set up your personal and private consultation.