What to do with the ultrasound results of the fetus with cleft palate?

The article was professionally consulted by Specialist Doctor II Nguyen Thi Phuong Loan - Obstetrician and Gynecologist - Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology - Vinmec Hai Phong International General Hospital

Cleft palate is a birth defect that can be detected by fetal ultrasound, there can be many causes of this condition and it is completely treatable with surgery. When screening for malformations detects that the baby has a cleft palate, parents often worry that it may affect the development of the fetus in the womb, so what should parents do when detecting this condition? ?

1. Detecting fetal cleft palate

During the formation and development of the fetus, the lips are formed between the 4th and 5th weeks of pregnancy, the upper jaw is formed between the 7th and 8th weeks. at this time increases the risk of forming cleft lip and cleft palate such as infection with some viruses, heavy use of alcohol, tobacco, vitamin A overdose......
Ultrasound can detect cleft palate at 20 weeks onwards, in addition, some other abnormalities such as hydrocephalus, kidney aplasia, duodenal stenosis...
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2. What to do when detecting pregnancy with cleft palate?

When detecting an ultrasound image of a fetus with cleft palate, it is necessary to pay attention to the following issues:
If it is a cleft lip or cleft palate alone, there is no need to worry too much, because it can be treated with surgery. . There are many cases of not only cleft palate but also many other dangerous malformations such as Down syndrome, congenital heart disease, etc. Screening tests for other dangerous malformations. Ensure a complete, balanced diet throughout pregnancy. Avoid foods that are at risk of infection affecting the health of mother and baby. Ensuring nutrition is very important, although it does not change the nature of deformities, but is a way to help children develop well in the womb, making postpartum and pre-surgery care easier. Limit exposure to the environment with risk of pollution, radioactive substances, do not drink alcohol and smoke. When a child has a cleft palate, a child can grow up as healthy as other normal children, so when discovering that the fetus has this birth defect, the family should not be too stressed, especially the pregnant mother. Not good for pregnancy. You should practice some exercises to help reduce stress such as gentle walking, yoga, nourishing ...
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Prepare knowledge to care for children with cleft palate after birth: How to feed the baby: Before surgery, the most difficult problem is breastfeeding. Most babies with cleft lip and palate are unable to breastfeed or bottle-feed. Therefore, parents need to prepare for children who need a specialized bottle for children with cleft palate, milk for the baby can be expressed and then given to the baby to bottle or use formula if there is not enough breast milk or have medical problems. Unable to give breast milk to babies. Mothers need to be aware that babies with cleft palate will take longer and take more effort to produce the same amount of milk than normal babies. The number of times the mother feeds the baby needs more, the time for one time is not too long (should be less than 15 minutes) to avoid making the baby too tired.
Preventive care: Children with cleft palate have a higher risk of upper respiratory tract diseases, middle ear infections, so parents need to pay attention to cleaning the child's nose and mouth regularly with physiological saline. 9%.
Regularly monitor your pregnancy under the guidance of your doctor.
After the baby is born, it is often recommended to use certain devices to make later surgery and eating easier. Around 3-6 months, the child reaches over 6kg, good health is the right time to have surgery for cleft lip. As for cleft palate, the appropriate time for surgery is when the child is 12-18 months old, before the child learns to speak and reaches over 10 kg.
After surgery, children are trained in pronunciation, helping them to pronounce correctly and easily integrate into society. Parents need to prepare knowledge and often encourage children.
When having an ultrasound of a fetus with a cleft palate, it is important to conduct a number of other screening tests and monitor the pregnancy often to help detect other dangerous abnormalities that may accompany the cleft palate. If the baby has a simple cleft palate, the family should not be too worried because the child can be cured by surgery, what parents need to do is keep a comfortable mind, prepare knowledge to care for the baby after birth and before surgery. .
Vinmec International General Hospital offers a Package Maternity Care Program for pregnant women right from the first months of pregnancy with a full range of antenatal care visits, periodical 3D and 4D ultrasounds and routine tests to ensure that the mother is healthy and the fetus is developing comprehensively. Pregnant women will be consulted and checked for health under the close supervision of experienced and specialized obstetricians, helping mothers gain more knowledge to protect their health during pregnancy as well as minimize complications affecting mother and child.

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