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What Is A Cleft Lip?

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Updated November 13, 2011

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Bilateral Complete Cleft Lip
bilateral complete cleft lip

Bilateral Complete Cleft Lip

Photo © Millicent Odunze, M.D., M.P.H.

Bilateral Complete Cleft Lip

A bilateral complete cleft lip affects both the right and left sides of the lip. There are no philtral columns, no philtral dimple, and there is no orbicularis muscle in the central segment. On both sides, the cleft extends from the vermillion to the nostril. The lack of continuity in the muscle makes clear speech difficult for these individuals. Feeding can be more difficult.

There is nasal distortion with a bilateral complete cleft lip. Both alar rims are widened, the nasal sills are missing and the nose takes on a flattened appearance.

Next page: Bilateral Incomplete Cleft Lip

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