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Jornal de Pediatria

Print version ISSN 0021-7557


AMSTALDEN-MENDES, Lívia G et al. Time of diagnosis of oral clefts: a multicenter study. J. Pediatr. (Rio J.) [online]. 2011, vol.87, n.3, pp.225-230. ISSN 0021-7557.

OBJECTIVE: To determine the time of diagnosis of typical orofacial clefts in different Brazilian regions and its influence on age at surgical correction. METHOD: This was a prospective, descriptive, cross-sectional study conducted in medical centers in the Southeast, South, and Northeast of Brazil. Trained speech therapists and geneticists interviewed the parents of affected children using a previously validated questionnaire. Epi-Info and SPSS were used for data analysis. Significance level was set at 5% (p < 0.05). RESULTS: The sample consisted of 215 interviews conducted in the following regions: 21.9% (47) in the Southeast, 51.1% (110) in the South, and 27% (58) in the Northeast. Monthly family income was higher in the Southeast (p < 0.05). Cleft lip and palate were found in 61.4% (132) of cases, cleft palate in 20.9% (45), and cleft lip in 17.7% (38). Diagnosis occurred in the maternity ward in 75.3% (162) of cases, during the prenatal period in 14% (30), and after hospital discharge in 10.2% (22). The Southeast had a higher frequency of prenatal diagnosis (27.7%), possibly related to greater purchasing power in this region and greater availability of prenatal investigation. Of all cases diagnosed in the maternity ward, 74.4% occurred in the Northeast. However, no significant difference was found when comparing time of diagnosis, region, and age at first surgery. CONCLUSION: Considering that diagnosis is more common in the maternity ward, local health care teams should be trained in order to effectively improve the initial care of these patients. Although time of diagnosis did not affect age at surgery, it favors the planning of neonatal care and treatment of affected infants.

Keywords : Cleft lip; cleft palate; diagnosis; public health.

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