Causes

Causes

Even though cleft lips and palates are the most common congenital deformations of humankind it is still not fully clear from the medial point of view what actually causes them. It is known that the risks for cleft deformations are increased by several external factors such as pollution of the environment and food, hypoxia of the embryo and malnutrition of the mother (folic acid and vitamin C deficiency) as well as possibly being of hereditary origin. Cleft lips and palates develop during the fourth week of pregnancy when the separate parts of the face begin joining together starting from the outside and proceeding inwards. If the embryo’s development is in some way disturbed during this phase the layers of tissue do not fuse completely. The various types of clefts are then the result.