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August 1968

Submucous Cleft Palate

Author Affiliations

New Haven, Conn
From the Section of Otolaryngology, Department of Surgery, Yale-New Haven Medical Center and Yale University School of Medicine, and the Section of Otolaryngology and Maxillofacial Surgery, Department of Surgery, Hospital of Saint Raphael, New Haven, Conn.

Arch Otolaryngol. 1968;88(2):184-189. doi:10.1001/archotol.1968.00770010186015

SUBMUCOUS clefts of the palate are of great importance to the otolaryngologist. This condition must be searched for in all children considered for tonsil and adenoid surgery as well as those children presenting with chronic middle ear disease or speech defects not responding satisfactorily to speech therapy.

The purpose of this paper is to review the signs and symptoms of this congenital deformity and emphasize the need for an early diagnosis so that the repair of the palatal defect can be coordinated with ear, nose, and throat procedures. All too frequently submucous clefts of the palate are unmasked at the time of tonsil and adenoid surgery by the development of persistent postoperative cleft palate speech.

The submucous cleft palate has been recognized in the literature for over a century and one quarter. An excellent review of this condition appeared in the British literature in 1952.1 The cleft is considered

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