Gross unilateral abnormalities of the velum and pharynx

Felicity V Mehendale, Brian C Sommerlad

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


OBJECTIVE: Velopharyngeal incompetence because of gross unilateral velopharyngeal hypoplasia is rare, particularly in patients with no significant hemifacial microsomia or facial asymmetry. We describe the abnormal anatomy and treatment of three patients with gross congenital velopharyngeal asymmetry.

RESULTS AND CONCLUSIONS: Following surgery, all three patients showed a good improvement in velopharyngeal function and speech. Nasendoscopy and lateral videofluoroscopy were important in confirming the abnormal anatomy and pathology and in evaluating the degree of movement of the affected side of the velum and pharyngeal walls as well as the size and location of the defect. Muscles from the normal side were radically dissected and mobilized across the midline to reconstruct the hypoplastic hemivelum. Mucosal lengthening was achieved by suturing the normal mucosa to the mucosa of the hypoplastic hemivelum and the lateral pharyngeal wall or by insetting a posterolateral pharyngeal flap (modified Moore pharyngoplasty) into the nasal surface of the hypoplastic side.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)461-8
Number of pages8
JournalCleft Palate-Craniofacial Journal
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - Jul 2002


  • Articulation Disorders
  • Child
  • Cleft Palate
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Palate, Soft
  • Pharynx
  • Velopharyngeal Insufficiency
  • Voice Disorders
  • Case Reports
  • Journal Article


Dive into the research topics of 'Gross unilateral abnormalities of the velum and pharynx'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this