Cleft palate is one of the most common birth defects in the United States. Cleft palate is a separation in the roof of the mouth that occurs when it fails to join, or fuse, as a child is developing before birth.

Dental, speech, feeding and hearing problems may result from this condition.

Surgery to correct a cleft palate is usually done between 9 months and 2 years of age, and may require several stages of repair.