Time course of improvement after re-repair procedure for VPI management

Academic Article


  • Objectives: Palatal re-repair aims to improve velar function by retro-positioning the levator veli palatini muscles. The surgery includes extensive dissection, leading to tissue edema and scar formation which may need time to remodel. Together with the change of muscle orientation and tension, it is expected that a period of time is needed to reach the final functional performance. This study attempts to determine how much time is required to reach the optimum performance of the palate after re-repair. Methods: A retrospective chart review identified consecutive cleft patients with VPI who underwent palate re-repair procedure by a single surgeon from 2000 to 2015 and achieved normal or borderline normal VP function. Only patients who had regular postoperative follow-up visits for speech assessments until resolution of speech abnormalities were included. The percent of patients cured at each time point following surgery was recorded. Results: Forty-five patients met the inclusion criteria. The mean age at surgery was 6.6 ± 3.2 years. Speech abnormalities had resolved in 44.5% of patients within the first 6 months after surgery, 62.2% after up to 1 year, 75.6% after up to 2 years and 88.9% after up to 3 years post re-repair palatoplasty. The remaining 11.1% continued to improve after 3 years up to 6 years. Conclusions: Re-repair procedures may take a longer time than previously thought for the final outcome to manifest. Close monitoring of improvement with continued speech therapy is recommended before deciding to move to the next surgical step in management.
  • Authors

    Digital Object Identifier (doi)

    Author List

  • Elsherbiny A; Amerson M; Sconyers L; Grant JH
  • Start Page

  • 895
  • End Page

  • 899
  • Volume

  • 71
  • Issue

  • 6