Isolated Versus Pierre Robin Sequence Cleft Palates: Are They Different?

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To determine if there are any differences in size between isolated cleft palates (CPs) and those associated with Pierre Robin (PR) sequence.

Study Design:

Prospective case series.


Tertiary care hospital.

Subjects and Methods:

From 1993 to 2011, nonsyndromic isolated CP and PR sequence cases were classified as severe if the patients had respiratory or feeding difficulties. While patients were under general anesthesia, seven anatomical cleft parameters were prospectively measured in the operating room at the time of palatoplasty.


Fifty-seven patients without the PR sequence and 36 patients with the PR sequence were enrolled. Within the PR group, 61% of cases were mild and 39% were severe. A larger soft palate width was found to be statistically significant in a comparison of the severe PR cases with the isolated clefts (P< .005) and mild PR (P< .05), respectively. For the hard palate width, a statistically significant difference was found in a comparison of the narrower isolated cleft cases with the mild PR (P< .05) and the severe PR cases (P< .05), respectively. A shorter cleft length was found to be statistically significant in isolated clefts versus both the clefts of the mild PR (P< .05) and the severe PR cases (P< .05).


The patients with PR sequence presented statistically significant different cleft characteristics. The increased width of the cleft at the soft palate level showed the greatest correlation with increased airway and feeding problems.

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