Current Environment:

Conditions such as cleft lip, cleft palate, craniosynostosis, and other craniofacial anomalies affect a child’s head and facial bones. They are usually congenital, meaning present at birth, and can range from mild to severe. Treatment for cleft and craniofacial anomalies can include mechanical adjustments, surgery, or a combination of these and other approaches.

The skilled clinicians in the Cleft and Craniofacial Center at Boston Children’s Hospital see patients with a wide range of cleft and craniofacial conditions, from the common to the rarest and most complex. Every year, our specialists treat more than 1,800 patients — from infants to adults — living with craniofacial conditions that are either present at birth or developed later in life.

Our approach

The Cleft and Craniofacial Center includes two dedicated programs:

The Craniofacial Program: One of the oldest of its kind in the United States, our Craniofacial Program offers expertise in both rare and common conditions, including:

The Cleft Lip and Palate Program: Boston Children’s Cleft Lip and Palate Program is one of the largest and most respected of its kind anywhere in the world. Our combination of specialized training, innovative treatments, and compassionate, family centered care has made us a national leader in the care of patients with cleft lip and palate.

Children with facial differences may experience a variety of procedures and therapies throughout their lifetime. We will streamline your visits to the hospital so that multiple specialists can provide you and your child with a unified plan of care. Our team includes some of the world’s most experienced neurosurgeons, plastic surgeons, oral and maxillofacial (face and jaw) specialists, dentistry professionals, psychologists, and social workers — all working together to care for your child. We are specially trained in surgical and medical procedures for children, with an emphasis on using minimally invasive tests and operations whenever possible.

Our areas of innovation

Boston Children’s is a teaching affiliate of Harvard Medical School, where all of our physicians are also faculty. Our clinicians are also involved in research that moves us closer to a better understanding of — and treatment for — all anomalies of the head and face.

Meet patients of the Cleft and Craniofacial Center!

a man with crouzon syndrome smiling at the camera

JR's story

JR has received care from Boston Children's Hospital for more than 30 years to treat a rare form of craniosynostosis, befriending a team of providers who have addressed all aspects of his care, including dentistry, neurosurgery, plastic and oral surgery, and psychiatry.