Carson's cleft lip surgery Thurs.

Children and adults with cleft lip and/or palate issues

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Carson's cleft lip surgery Thurs.

Postby Carson's Mom » Sun Jun 29, 2008 5:17 pm

I've learned so much about what to expect after the cleft palate surgery by reading all of the posts and responses, but there doesn't seem to be as much about the cleft lip surgery. I'm hoping that's because it's they have a much easier time healing, right? :P We're scheduled for Carson's lip surgery on July 3rd at 8:00 AM. Does anyone have any last minute words of advice on what to expect after surgery? When your children got to go home? How they slept? If they were sedated so they weren't in much pain? If they have the tongue stitch thing after this surgery too? Any info. would be appreciated. I'm a planner and it's so hard to go into this with so many unknown questions.
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Postby Linda S S » Mon Jun 30, 2008 6:33 am

Hi Carson's Mom,
My niece had UCL surgery in Feb at 6 months old. I went up to help out with her and her two brothers. She did not have a tongue stitch, I think that's generally just for cleft palate. They planned to keep her overnight but were willing to discharge her at about 5 pm because she took the breast again by then. If my sister and brother-in-law had wanted her to stay overnight they probably would have kept her. Different surgeons and different hospitals have different thoughts/requirements on breast vs. bottle after the surgery and on overnight or not (depending on how things go).

My niece had to wear the arm splints (no-nos) to keep her from touching her mouth and she kept trying to get them off. She had to (try to) sleep in her car seat to keep her head elevated and her on her back so she wouldn't rub her face against anything. We went to her grandmother's to spend that first night because it was considerably closer.

She cried much of the night and didn't want to nurse. The hospital had sent along a small oral syringe of baby pain reliever which we finally used and then we used that syringe to give her some of the pumped breast milk and she finally fell asleep.

She was old enough that she always wanted to be doing something with her hands (mainly trying to put things in her mouth) so a little toy keyboard was something she would do with arms in the splints.

Plan to wear a top you don't care much about because there's usually a little blood. Take along some food for yourself and something to do while you wait. If you have other children, have someone available to help with them.

Joy's surgery was scheduled for 7 or 7:30 am. They wanted my sister, brother-in-law and niece at the hospital at 6 or 6:30 am. Once my nephews, 3 & 7, and I got up and had breakfast, I took them to the Mall of America on public transit and they called about noon and said she was in recovery and doing well. The hospital that did her surgery had a playroom near her room, so the boys and I spent most of the afternoon in there, but they/we could go check on the others from time to time.

The mall gave my nephews something to look forward to rather than dread and kept them from worrying too much about the surgery.

Hope all goes well. Let us know when you have a chance.
Linda S S
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Postby Babyk » Tue Jul 01, 2008 10:29 am

Avery had his lip surgery in January at 5 months of age and it went pretty well. He had some significant swelling in his nose which caused some breathing issues but he had extensive repairs done because his cleft was very wide.

You can see his pics at if you like....

We have palate surgery on July 9th! This will be it for a while!

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