Cleft Palate Program
Caring for cleft lip & palate in children of all ages
Cleft lip and palate are fissures in the upper lip and palate (the bony plate at the roof of the mouth). They often occur together and are caused by incomplete closing of the two sides of the face in the developing embryo.
They are one of the most common problems found in newborns. The incidence of cleft lip and palate is 1:700. There are about 5,000 babies born with cleft lip and/or palate born each year in the U.S.
The malformation can only be treated with surgery and therapy. If left untreated, children with cleft lip and palate can suffer life-long handicaps including severe facial deformities, chronic dental and hearing problems, malnutrition and even social problems.
The cleft palate program at Adventist Health White Memorial has been serving the community since 1980. We provide comprehensive evaluation and treatment for children of all ages as well as adults. We are a multidisciplinary team.
Our cleft palate program is CCS-approved for the child's total cleft palate care. We maintain a comprehensive affiliation with Loma Linda University and allied health/specialist affiliations with USC, UCLA, CSUN and CSULA.
Our program provides coordinated cleft team care at a single location, working side by side with the patient's own pediatrician or primary care physician. This program is an important service to the community and depends on financial gifts from generous donors for continuity. We also accept all types of insurance, including CCS, Medi-Cal, HMOs, Regional Center funding and private insurance.
Services in the cleft palate program include:
- Plastic and reconstructive surgery
- Newborn nursery consultation
- Nutrition consultation
- Lactation consultation
- Comprehensive pediatric rehabilitation services
- Speech and language therapy
- Occupational therapy
- Feeding therapy
- Physical therapy
- Cleft palate continuum of care
- Social services
- Otolaryngologist (ENT specialist)
- Cleft genetics
If you need a physician or specialist for any reason, please contact our Physician Referral number at (323) 265-5050.