Children's Hospital Colorado

About the Cleft Lip and Palate Clinic

We collaborate with every specialty in the hospital to advance new surgical techniques, teach tomorrow’s surgeons and give our patients a brighter today.



The Cleft Lip and Palate Clinic provides patients with pediatric experts, comprehensive care, a multidisciplinary team and insights from leading research.

A headshot of a girl with long blonde hair wearing a pink and black flowered shirt with a gray sweatshirt over it smiles at the camera.

  • We have been treating children with cleft lip and cleft palates for more than 45 years.
  • Our clinic is one of the top treatment centers in the country and the largest multidisciplinary program in the Rocky Mountain region.
  • The team offers patients with expert care from 11 pediatric specialties.
  • Each year over 350 children are seen in the Cleft Lip and Palate Clinic; this number includes 60-80 newborns.

Endorsed by the American Cleft Palate Association

The American Cleft Palate-Craniofacial Association endorsement signifies that our program provides a high level of care for children with cleft conditions. To achieve this recognition, our clinic demonstrated the ability to provide the best possible results for children born with clefts or other craniofacial birth defects. Our experts know that children born with a cleft lip and cleft palate have the best results when their care is provided by a team of dedicated specialists who work together.

A collaborative team of specialists makes the difference for your child

At Children’s Hospital Colorado, treatment for cleft lip and cleft palate begins as soon as the child is diagnosed, whether in utero or at birth. Care continues through childhood and into adulthood. An individualized treatment plan is developed by a team of specialists with input from the family.

The child’s needs are continually re-evaluated based on their life stage, growth and development. The team of specialists working with you and your child may grow or shrink throughout treatment. The team-focused approach creates an environment where the team specialists are in constant collaboration.

The Cleft Lip and Palate Clinic is affiliated with the University Of Colorado School Of Medicine. Our team helps educate families how to navigate through the health care system and advocate for their child.

What to expect in the Cleft Lip and Palate Clinic

Our multidisciplinary team meets on Mondays approximately three times a month. Your child’s visit to the Cleft Lip and Palate Clinic consists of a daylong evaluation, which is recommended every 1-2 years. While at the clinic, patients see specialists to determine a treatment plan. The evaluation day at the clinic can be a very long day, so we recommend parents be prepared with books, toys, electronic devices, and even snacks for your child.

For new patients: during the evaluation, patients and parents/caregivers will meet with two surgeons. Parents have the opportunity to choose which surgeon they would like to care for their child. Each surgeon has credentials, training and experience performing cleft surgeries. Surgeons coordinate their schedules to accommodate multiple procedures under one anesthetic, with the goal of limiting your child’s exposure to anesthesia.

For new babies and newly adopted children: attend an afternoon appointment.

For older children and established patients: the clinic visit is spent seeing various specialists. These children will see:

  • an audiologist
  • an occupational therapist (feeding specialist)
  • a speech and language pathologist
  • a social worker
  • a pediatric dentist
  • an orthodontist (kids 6 years and older)
  • a psychologist
  • a genetic counselor

After an evaluation at the Cleft Lip and Palate Clinic: The team meets to discuss each child’s individualized treatment plan. Parents receive a written report with team recommendations.

Treatments we offer include nasoalveolar molding (NAM), nasal endoscopy, surgical interventions, scar management, feeding support, and hearing evaluation. Learn more about treatments for cleft lip and/or cleft palate.

Conditions we treat

Examples of patients that we see include:

Clinics we offer

Available specialty clinics, depending on your child's needs, include:

Contact us

The cleft lip and palate team at Children’s Colorado welcomes your phone calls for questions and consultations. For more information, or to make an appointment, please use the following phone numbers:

For appointments or questions in the Denver-metro area, please call 720-777-2574.

For appointments or questions in the Colorado Springs area, please call 719-305-9575.

What is multidisciplinary care?

Many conditions affect more than one area of the body, which means your child needs to see more than one doctor. That’s why we practice multidisciplinary care: to help families see all the experts you need at one appointment.