Cleft palate. The uvula may be involved if the cleft is in the soft palate or the hard and soft palate. Closure of the cleft palate will not necessarily restore the appearance of a uvula, however, this is not medically necessary for future speech.
It is common. All children with cleft palate have a uvula that is split into two halves. It is usually put together during surgery but may not be visible on regular exam.
Surgery or therapy. Speech therapy, that is. It really depends on the extent of the speech problem. A patient like this needs to be evaluated by a cleft lip and palate multi-disciplinary team. The uvula is not necessarily important to speech. A listing of nearby teams can be found at acpa-cpf.Org. Read more...