Mercy Hospital Dunedin - Plastic & Reconstructive Surgery
Private Surgical Service, Plastic Surgery
Cleft Lip/Cleft Palate
Surgery to repair a cleft lip involves making a cut (incision) on both sides of the gap in the lip (cleft). The surgeon then turns the dark-coloured edge of the cleft under and pulls the muscle and skin of the lip together to close the gap.
Surgery to repair a cleft palate involves making cuts in the roof of the mouth on each side of the gap. Tissue and muscles are moved towards the centre of the roof of the mouth and joined together, closing the gap.