The CDC recently estimated that each year in the United States, about 2,650 babies are born with a cleft palate and 4,440 babies are born with a cleft lip with or without a cleft palate.
Children with these congenital problems are usually managed in a multi-specialty cleft clinic. Babies with cleft lips usually undergo repair in the first few months of life while palate repair is performed during the first year to 18 months.
The baby usually spends one night in the hospital. Full recovery may take up to two weeks. As the child grows often additional surgeries are needed.