Cleft lip and cleft palate are some of the most common birth defects that are seen today, occurring in about one or two children in every 1,000 births in this country. Although cleft lip and cleft palate are quite prevalent in the United States, birth defects attorneys say that these craniofacial malformations occur even more often in children of Latino and Asian descent. These happen when there is an incomplete development of the lip or roof of the mouth during fetal formation, which leaves an opening. Although these birth defects are quite common, women who take Topamax, the popular migraine and epilepsy drug, during pregnancy may be at an even higher risk.
The Many Forms of Cleft Lip, Cleft Palate, or Both
In the early development of a fetus (the first three months of pregnancy), the lips and palate develop separately. Since the development is not simultaneous, babies may be born with only a cleft lip, a cleft palate, or in some cases both. When parts of the lip or palate do not completely come together, the orofacial problems begin to develop. There can also be many variations in the different types of clefts. A cleft can occur only on one side of the mouth, known as a unilateral cleft, or on both sides of the mouth, known as a bilateral cleft. Young girls are more likely to have a cleft palate that occurs alone. On the other hand, an oral cleft, regardless of whether it is lip or palate, is generally more common in boys.
Birth Defects Attorneys in New Jersey and Philadelphia
Many parents who have children born with a cleft lip or cleft palate are often overwhelmed and, in some instances, confused about their legal rights. They are especially confused about whether or not the services of birth defects attorneys would be needed. In some cases, there have been improper actions that may have led to your child’s birth defect and contacting our professional team is beneficial to your family’s physical and financial health. Contact the Mininno Law Office for a free case evaluation or call for a free consultation at (856) 833-0600 in New Jersey, or (215) 567-2380 in Philadelphia.