It can be scary to hear your child needs treatment for a condition impacting their face or head, like cleft lip and cleft palate or a craniofacial abnormality. Rest assured we see these conditions every day at Atrium Health Levine Children’s and have lots of experience diagnosing, treating and repairing them.

From diagnosis to treatment to recovery – and even into adulthood – we stick by your child every step of the way, helping them have the healthy, happy life they deserve.

Make an appointment with our cleft and craniofacial team.

What are cleft lip and cleft palate?

A cleft lip or palate is when a baby’s lips or mouth doesn't form properly before they’re born.

Also called orofacial clefts, they’re common birth defects and usually treatable.

What are craniofacial conditions?

A craniofacial abnormality is when the face or skull doesn’t grow or develop like it should. Similar to cleft lip and palate, craniofacial conditions occur before a baby is born. We also treat craniofacial conditions caused by disease or trauma.

Craniofacial conditions we treat include:

  • Aplasia cutis congenita
  • Branchial cleft cysts
  • Craniosynostosis and associated syndromes
  • DiGeorge syndrome, or velocardiofacial syndrome (VCFS)
  • Facial palsy, including Moebius syndrome
  • Facial trauma
  • Goldenhar syndrome
  • Hemifacial microsomia
  • Jaw irregularities
  • Lymphovascular malformations
  • Pierre Robin sequence, or micrognathia
  • Positional plagiocephaly, or flat or abnormal head shape
  • Tessier craniofacial clefts
  • Treacher Collins syndrome (TCS)
  • Velopharyngeal insufficiency and other palate abnormalities

Cleft and craniofacial treatments

For children with cleft and craniofacial conditions, treatment is often all they need to repair the abnormality. Some patients require a combination of treatments to correct or manage the condition, including surgery, laser procedures and other therapies.

Treatments for cleft lip and palate include:

  • Alveolar bone grafting, to add bone to the gums and fill gaps left by cleft lip and palate
  • Cleft lip repair, to correct the groove left by a cleft lip
  • Cleft palate repair, to correct the hole in the roof of the mouth
  • Cleft rhinoplasty, to reshape a nose affected by cleft lip and palate
  • Palatal lengthening, to lengthen the soft palate

Treatments for craniofacial abnormalities include:

  • Craniosynostosis repair, to correct conditions that cause the skull to grow together
  • Endoscopic torticollis treatment, a minimally invasive procedure that helps children with limited mobility in their neck reach a full range of motion
  • Excision of head and neck masses, the process of removing congenital, benign or malignant tumors from a child’s head or neck
  • Facial nerve reconstruction/reanimation, to repair nerves in the face for enhanced facial movements and expressions
  • Jaw distraction, or lengthening the jaw
  • Laser treatment, to remove or reduce the appearance of vascular lesions
  • Microsurgical reconstruction, a surgery to repair tissues affected by trauma, cancer and birth defects
  • Orthognathic surgery, or jaw surgery
  • Otoplasty, or ear correction surgery
  • Post-trauma cranial and facial reconstruction, surgery to correct conditions affecting the head and face as the result of trauma
  • Lymphovascular malformation surgery, to remove lymphatic abnormalities that are small and in one place

Why Levine Children’s?

  • 30+ pediatric specialties. In addition to plastic and reconstructive surgery, our cleft and craniofacial patients have direct access to lots of pediatric specialty care – as well as easy connection to healthcare providers we trust in the community.
  • Award-winning children’s hospital. For many years in a row, U.S. News & World Report has ranked Levine Children’s Hospital one of the top children’s hospitals in the nation.
  • Care into adulthood. Our care doesn’t stop after your child’s treatment. We follow them into adulthood to make sure they’re developing healthfully and happily.


Pediatric Cleft and Craniofacial Care
Carolinas HealthCare System Pediatric Surgery - Morehead Medical Plaza
1025 Morehead Medical Drive, Suite 200
Charlotte, NC 28203