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Postoperative Velopharyngeal Closure Function Following Unified Velopharyngeal Plasty as Secondary Surgery for Cleft Palate: One- and Three-Year Follow-Up Results

Author(s): Michie Ito | Kou Kawahara | Michiko Shimooka | Miru Takami | Kana Mukai | Yu Ito | Kenichi Kurita | Atsushi Abe | Atsushi Nakayama

Journal: Advances in Molecular Imaging
ISSN 2161-6728

Volume: 03;
Issue: 02;
Start page: 59;
Date: 2012;
Original page

Keywords: Velopharyngeal Insufficiency | Cleft Palate | Pharyngeal Flap Operation | Postoperative Speech Outcome | Velopharyngeal Closure Function

Velopharyngeal closure function following modified unified velopharyngeal plasty performed by a single surgeon was evaluated pre- and postoperatively in 14 children with cleft palate after cleft palate closure and no improvement by speech training. Subjects were evaluated for velopharyngeal closure function before and after surgery at 1 (short-term evaluation) and 3 (mid-term evaluation) years. Degree of hypernasality and degree of air leakage through the nose in the soft blowing test were each classified into three grades and each grade was given scores. Velopharyngeal closure function was classified according to the total score into four grades: “good”, "fair”, "slightly poor” and “poor”. At the short-term evaluation, 11 patients (78.6%) achieved an improvement to “good” or “fair” on the overall evaluation. More satisfactory results were obtained at the mid-term evaluation, with 14 patients (100%) graded as “good” or “fair”. Our results indicate that this modified unified velopharyngeal plasty effectively improves velopharyngeal insufficiency when performed as a secondary surgery for cleft palate in children.

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