What is cleft lip rhinoplasty?

Dr paul gerarchi

Cleft lip rhinoplasty is a common issue and can be corrected with a series of restorative procedures.

A cleft lip and cleft palate occur when there is an opening or split in the upper lip and/or the roof of the mouth. They are a result of facial structures that develop in an unborn baby not closing completely. Cleft lip and cleft palate are among the most common birth defect and most commonly happen as an isolated birth defect though they can be associated with many inherited genetic conditions or syndromes. The good news is that a cleft palate and lip can be corrected with a series of surgeries that can restore function and achieve a more normal appearance with minimal scarring.

What are the symptoms of a cleft palate or cleft lip?

A spilt or cleft in the lip or palate is usually immediately identifiable at birth. Most commonly they will appear as:

  • A split in the lip and roof of the mouth affecting one or both sides of the face
  • A split in the lip that appears as a small notch in the lip or extends from the lip through the upper gum and palate into the bottom of the nose
  • A split in the roof of the mouth that doesn’t affect facial appearance

What causes a cleft palate or cleft lip?

During the second and third months of pregnancy, the tissues that make up the lip and palate will fuse together but in those babies with a cleft lip or palate, this fusion never takes place or only occurs partially, leaving an opening. Researchers believe that most cases of a cleft lip and cleft palate are caused by genetic and environmental factors though in many babies a definitive cause is unknown. In some cases, babies can inherit a gene that makes them more likely to develop a cleft and then an environmental trigger may cause the cleft to occur.

What are the risk factors?

Several factors may increase the chances of a baby developing a cleft lip or clef palate and these include:

Family history

Parents with a family history of cleft lip or cleft palate have a higher risk of having a baby with a cleft.

Exposure to substances during pregnancy

Women who smoke, drink and take certain medications during pregnancy may be more likely to have a baby with a cleft.


There is some evidence that women who suffer from diabetes make have an increased risk of having a baby with a cleft lip or cleft palate.


Babies born to obese women may also have a higher chance of cleft lip and palate.


Males are also more likely to develop cleft than females.

What is cleft lip rhinoplasty?

Displeasure with your appearance can have significant impacts on your self-perception and leave you with a feeling of unhappiness. This feeling can be heightened in individuals with significant congenital defects, or there may be several facial features which are bothersome to these individuals.

Cleft lip rhinoplasty is a specialised reshaping procedure offered by Dr Paul Gerarchi which can help to correct the malformation of your nose and return some of the functionality of your natural features. Choosing an experienced and professional surgeon is the first step to realising your dream of a rectified real appearance and a more harmonious facial aesthetic.

What are the results of cleft palate rhinoplasty?

As cleft lip rhinoplasty’s primary goal is to restore functionality, the journey will be different to other purely cosmetic procedures. Your approach and recovery will be similar, however, and will be treated with the utmost levels of dedication and care. The treatment will be skilfully tailored to your particular needs and the problems you are personally experiencing. Looking beautiful and functioning correctly is something you can soon achieve, working alongside your knowledgeable surgeon, Dr Paul Gerarchi.

Recovery after cleft lip rhinoplasty

Though a cleft lip rhinoplasty differs to a standard rhinoplasty procedure, you can expect a similar recovery process. It is likely that you will be sent home after your surgery so you can relax and recover in the comfort of your own home. Your nose will be placed in a cast to protect the area and to hold it in place. Stitches will later be removed, or will naturally dissolve with time, depending on which your surgeon has decided will be best for you. Rest is a crucial part of the journey as ever, so Dr Gerarchi recommends that you avoid physical activity, smoking and alcohol consumption and that you sleep with your face in an elevated position.

What happens after surgery?

Your comfort in the days following your surgery is paramount so Dr Gerarchi will prescribe pain medication and antibiotics to assist your body and mind through the healing process. It is important that you inform your surgeon about any additional medication you are taking or are intending to take – including non-prescription –  as they may interfere with your healing process and encumber you realising your new nose and lip. To ensure that you are progressing satisfactorily and you are pleased with your progress, some follow-up appointments will be scheduled. Dr Gerarchi will examine the area and you are encouraged to communicate openly about how you are feeling and any questions you may have. From consultation to follow-up, your care and your happiness are at the forefront of the entire process.

If you have any questions regarding our cleft lip rhinoplasty procedure, please contact our office. We will be happy to discuss your options and answer any questions you have about the procedure and your specific case.