Cleft & Cancer - Lexington, KY
Cleft Palate Surgery
and Oral Cancer Prosthetics
What Are Maxillofacial
In many instances, oral cancer, trauma, or congenital anomalies (i.e., cleft palate) result in holes or large gaps in the mouth. To correct these gaps, a maxillofacial prosthetic must be placed by an experienced prosthodontist. Prosthetics such as palatal obturators can restore missing bones and repair severely damaged tissue and can allow cleft palate and oral cancer patients to speak, eat, and swallow normally again.
What is a Cleft Palate?
A cleft palate is a congenital condition where there is an opening or split in the roof of the mouth. This affects speech, eating, and even facial appearance. Cleft palates most often arise from birth, but they can also occur because of trauma, disease, or surgery. For instance, surgical therapy for oral cancer will often necessitate the removal of a portion of the palate.
When the palate is properly developed, it keeps fluids and food from entering the nose when you swallow. It also helps to clearly enunciate words when you talk. These routine activities are severely affected by a cleft palate, but fortunately, award-winning prosthodontist Dr. Brandon Stapleton has the experience and technology to place cleft palate obturators, which assist in regaining 100% functionality.
Early Screening for Oral
Cancer and Soft Tissue Disease
In addition to repairing cleft palates and other conditions stemming from oral surgery, Dr. Brandon Stapleton and the team at iDENTity Dental Studio are also well-equipped for early soft tissue disease detection and oral cancer screenings in Lexington, KY. Using state-of-the-art VELscope® technology, our team can clearly visualize pre-cancerous bacteria, fungi, and viruses in the oral cavity and treat them effectively before they fester into bigger oral health issues.
Expertise and Experience Matters
While necessary for the management of the disease, oral cancer treatments and surgeries can often have detrimental effects on the appearance of the mouth, face, and teeth. Patients may experience tooth loss, gum disease, dry mouth, and even large holes in the mouth because of intensive oral cancer treatment. Dr. Stapleton possesses a unique set of skills and years of advanced training in oral cancer restoration.
Even after the surgical removal of facial tissue, Dr. Stapleton can help cancer patients live a normal life with a beautiful set of teeth and a flawless, fully functional smile. In most instances, we treat cleft palates and oral cancer patients with obturators in the upper jaw and resection prostheses in the lower jaw. The obturator closes the defect and improves the patient’s ability to speak, eat, drink, and live a more fulfilling life.