Pediatric Cleft Lip & Palate: A Virtual Prenatal Visit

Cleft Lip and Palate Pre- and Post-Childbirth


Typically, there are no special requirements for delivering an infant with a cleft lip and/or palate. The team of physicians will work with you and your obstetrician to determine your delivery plan. However, you should select a hospital that is well prepared to assess your baby's needs and has a feeding specialist experienced in feeding infants with clefts. Some babies may be transferred to the neonatal intensive care unit for closer observation. Once the baby is born, the pediatric team will conduct a physical assessment to assure the baby has no other medical problems.


Most babies with a cleft lip and cleft palate have difficulty breast-feeding due to poor suction and difficulty latching on to the breast. However, breast milk is encouraged and mothers are usually able to pump and feed using nipples specially designed for clefts. A feeding assessment is initiated while your baby is still in the newborn nursery. The feeding specialist can select the right system and establish a successful feeding program.

Long-Term Outcomes and Considerations

The Texas Cleft-Craniofacial Team meets monthly to evaluate each patient. The team is composed of clinical specialists, including plastic surgery, oral maxillofacial surgery, ENT or otolaryngology surgery, cleft orthodontist, speech therapy, nursing coordinator, and genetic counselors. Each patient is seen once a year to assess your child’s appearance, speech, dental needs, and overall wellbeing until full facial growth is achieved. This annual assessment allows you to see all the specialists that you need in one visit. It also allows the physicians to coordinate your care and determine the best clinical plan for your child.

Patient Stories

  • Neal smiling

    Neal Wille’s Path to a Big Smile

    May 12, 2022

    Three-year-old Neal Wille is among the one in 700 kids annually around the world born with a cleft lip and palate. Today, he’s a ball of smiles and sunshine when his parents bring him to see the Texas Cleft-Craniofacial Team for follow-up care after his surgeries that were performed at Chil...

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  • Cameron

    Cameron’s Story: Multidisciplinary Team Supports Boy on His Long Journey of Healing

    May 9, 2018

    Cameron is on the “A” honor roll in his fifth-grade class, a significant achievement for any kid. Cameron is not just any kid. He is a survivor. At 10 years of age, Cameron has already undergone 24 surgical procedures. Cameron was diagnosed with an extremely rare genetic condition known as Mandib...

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  • Jacob and Leah Yeglin

    A Smile So Sweet: Jacob’s Cleft Lip Story

    January 7, 2018

    On April 21, 2014, Leah Yeglin gave birth to her son, Jacob. Moments later, she began to sense something was wrong – and soon learned her intuition was right. A nurse informed her that Jacob had a cleft lip but, thankfully, was otherwise healthy. “It was a shock,” Yeglin remembers. “I thought tha...

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  • Macy

    Macy's Story: Cleft Lip and Palate

    July 15, 2016

    As Kenzie and Ricky attended their routine 18-week ultrasound, they expected everything to go smoothly; however, they received unexpected information about their baby girl, Macy. Their unborn daughter was diagnosed with a unilateral cleft (a split occurring on one side) that extended all the way ...

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  • Anthony wearing a tie

    Cleft Lip and Palate Program Brings New Smiles to Life

    May 20, 2014

    Daniella Coca’s son Anthony was born with both a cleft lip and palate. Coca was five months pregnant when she received the diagnosis after a 3-D ultrasound, which afforded her and Anthony’s father several months to meet John Teichgraeber, MD, and his team, determine a plan of action and better pr...

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  • Teichgraeber -Mission Mexico

    Physicians Bring Smiles to Patients Abroad

    May 2, 2014

    Pediatric surgeons have the ability to bring smiles to patients and their families. Dr. John Teichgraeber, director of the Division of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery in the Department of Pediatric Surgery, recently brought smiles and positive outcomes to patients in Mexico as part of a medica...

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Contact Us

If you have any questions, use the online tool below to help us connect with you. To schedule an appointment, please contact our clinic using the information below.

Texas Cranio-facial Team and Pediatric Plastic Surgery Clinic
6410 Fannin Street, Suite 950
Houston, TX 77030

Plastic & Reconstructive Surgery Clinic: (832) 325-7234
Texas Cranio-facial Team: (713) 500-7302
Vascular Anomalies Team: (832) 325-7234

Office Hours: 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. (Monday-Friday except major holidays)

To contact Children's Memorial Hermann Hospital, please fill out the form below.


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If you need more immediate assistance, please call us at (713) 704-KIDS (5437).