Tongue Lip Adhesion in the Treatment of Robin Sequence: Respiratory, Feeding, and Surgical Outcomes

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Objective evaluation of the efficacy of tongue lip adhesion (TLA) in the management of Robin sequence (RS).

Study Design:

Retrospective cohort study.


Tertiary referral hospital.

Patients, Participants:

The craniofacial database of Amsterdam UMC, Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam was searched to identify infants with RS who underwent tong lip adhesion (TLA). Forty-one RS infants who underwent TLA from 1993 to 2016 were identified.



Main Outcome Measure:

The outcome measures were pre- and postoperative polysomnography results, nutritional status, weight gain, age at operation, hospital stay length, extubation time after TLA, and complications.


Forty-one RS patients were included who had TLA at an average age of 26.6 days. In 16 cases a pre- and postoperative polysomnography was performed. In 13 of these cases (81.3%) improvement was observed, in 2 (12.5%) the results were inconclusive, and in 1 (6.3%) no improvement was seen. Patients were extubated after a mean of 2.2 days.


The mean hospital stay was 40.2 days. Reintervention was needed in 7 patients because of a wound dehiscence. The mean age of TLA release was 9.7 months. At discharge, 9 (22%) children still needed total nutritional support for persistent feeding difficulties. The average growth from birth to adhesion release was 4.6 kg.


This cohort demonstrates that TLA is a successful procedure in children with RS in terms of respiratory, feeding, and growth outcome. Only minor complications were seen in our cohort.

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