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Causes. Cleft lip and cleft palate occur when tissues in the baby's face and mouth don't fuse properly. Normally, the tissues that make up the lip and palate fuse together in the second and third months of pregnancy. But in babies with cleft lip and cleft palate, the fusion never takes place or occurs only part way,...
In most cases, the cause of cleft lip and cleft palate is unknown. These conditions cannot be prevented. Most scientists believe clefts are due to a combination of genetic and environmental factors. There appears to be a greater chance of clefting in a newborn if a sibling, parent, or relative has had the problem.
There are many causes of cleft lip and palate. Problems with genes passed down from 1 or both parents, drugs, viruses, or other toxins can all cause these birth defects. Cleft lip and palate may occur along with other syndromes or birth defects. A cleft lip and palate can: Affect the appearance of the face; Lead to problems with feeding and speech
Causes of Cleft Palate and Lip. The cause of cleft palate and lip isn’t known, but doctors believe that the defects occur because of both genetic and environmental factors. Genetics can play a role in the development of clefts if one or both parents pass down a gene that makes a cleft palate or lip more likely.
Cleft lip and cleft palate are defects that occur early in pregnancy. A baby’s facial features develop in the first trimester (3 months). The lips form first, followed by the mouth and palate. Clefts occur if the tissues and cells don’t form right. Cleft lip and cleft palate can occur by themselves.
When discussing the causes of orofacial clefts (cleft lips and palates), it is useful to separate those clefts associated with a syndrome (syndromic clefts) from those that are not (sporadic clefts). A syndrome is a condition in which multiple symptoms occur together; a syndrome involving a cleft lip or palate would include other signs or symptoms than just the cleft.