Steven Covici: Treatment Available for Many Congenital Craniofacial Anomalies

Posted on June 3, 2011

While every parent dreams of having a healthy baby, the fact remains that, each year, some children suffer from such birth defects as craniofacial anomalies. This type of deformity includes such relatively common problems as cleft palates and cleft lips. According to some studies, 1 in 700 children are born with cleft palates ranging from mild to severe. While some instances of congenital craniofacial anomalies require surgery to promote proper function and a more “normal” appearance, others are mild and may cause no disruption.

Dr. Steven Covici, who practices in Springfield, Massachusetts, focusing on ophthalmic plastic and reconstructive surgery and neuro-ophthalmology, performs surgeries on people afflicted with congenital craniofacial anomalies. In addition to serving patients, Dr. Covici published a highly regarded paper in 2000 that dealt with this type of condition.

“There is apparently no single factor that causes congenital craniofacial anomalies,” said Dr. Covici. “Factors that may lead to such defects include genetic issues and deficiencies in the levels of folic acid in the mother.”

A cleft palate describes the condition of incomplete development in the roof of the mouth while a fetus is in utero. This abnormality sometimes results in a hole in the roof of the mouth that extends well into the nasal cavity. In some cases, a cleft palate encompasses a cleft lip, but other people experience cleft lips that do not include the palate. A cleft lip describes a lip that has not completely developed. Cleft lips sometimes look like a small notch, though the condition may also cause a large separation of the lip running from the mouth to the nose.

If your child requires any reconstructive surgery of the eyelid, orbit or tear duct, visit for more information about options to repair the condition and pave the way for a more healthy life.

Posted in: Plastic Surgery