Cleft Lip/Palate

Topics: Philtrum, Cleft palate, Cleft lip and palate Pages: 4 (1594 words) Published: March 24, 2009
{text:bookmark-start} {text:bookmark-end} Cleft {text:bookmark-start} {text:bookmark-end} Expository Essay-Cleft Palate/Lip {text:bookmark-start} {text:bookmark-end} Melissa Sheeley {text:bookmark-start} {text:bookmark-end} Abstract {text:bookmark-start} {text:bookmark-end} Even though environmental or genetic issues are not always what causes cleft, it is a very common birth defect that can happen to any race or sex. Cleft Palate or Cleft Lip Cleft palate or cleft lip is a very common form of birth defect not usually talked about until it happens to you or someone you know. Cleft palate occurswhen there is an opening in the soft tissue on the roof of the mouth that can include the gum line too. Cleft lip is a split in the upper lip that usually runs from the nose to the lip splitting it into two sections. Cleft lip also can happen on both sides of the upper lip causing there to be a wide opening in the top lip. Statistics Statistics show that one in 700 babies born in the United States will have this 4thleading cause of birth defects. Doctors have no idea what causes these malformations of the mouth, but do know that they occur early in pregnancy. Theydo believe that genetics and environmental factors have to do with it. Most of the time doctors have no idea as to what exactly causes cleft but they do believe that it could be related to a medication that the mother took while pregnant, lack of vitamins during the pregnancy, or even exposure to cigarette smoke. (Kids Health 2008) Alcohol and illicit drugs are always a factor in any birth defect, but they have been known to be risk factors in cleft. It is known that boys are twice as likely to have a cleft lip as girls, where girls are twice as likely as boys to be born with cleft palate. Children of Asian, Latino, and Native American decent are more likely to carry the gene that does cause cleft palate or lip where African Americans are the least likely to get either form of cleft. Because the two parts...

Citations: Golonka, D. (2008). Cleft Palate. WebMD, retrieved December 18, 2008, from Bartoshesky MD, L. (2008). Cleft Palate. KidsHealth, retrieved December 18, 2008, from
Mayo Clinic Staff. (2008). Cleft Lip and Cleft Palate. Mayo Clinic, retrieved December 18, 2008, from
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