What should be expected following Palatoplasty surgery?
- Suture care – sutures are dissolvable, but they may be visible for several weeks. The mouth should be rinsed with water after every feed to help remove food particles from the area.
- Diet and Feeding – Your child should avoid using a regular nipple for 3 to 4 weeks after surgery.When your child is discharged from the hospital, he/she should be able to tolerate fluids well from a syringe, cup or cleft palate nipple. You should continue using this method of feeding until instructed by your doctor. If your child is eating solid food, the diet should consist of only soft food.
- Follow up appointment – you should schedule a follow up appointment with our office in 7 to 10 days after discharge from the hospital.
What are some reasons you should contact your doctor after surgery?
- Bleeding from the mouth – Some bloody discharge from the mouth is normal after this type of surgery. However, by the time you leave the hospital, almost all bleeding will have stopped. If your child has bleeding at home, please call the office and talk to the nurses to get our recommendations. Your child will be released from the hospital with arm restraints to help prevent your child from placing fingers or other objects in the mouth.
- Facial Puffiness – Some facial puffiness may be present after surgery. This usually resolves within two or three days. If you notice that the swelling continues or increases, please call our office.
- Pain – Your child will be discharged from the hospital with pain medication as prescribed by your physician. If your child is still in significant pain even when using these medications, please call our office.
- Fever – Your child may have a fever while in the hospital, but by the time of hospital discharge, the fever should be gone, or low grade. It is important to call our office if you notice any fever greater than 101.5 F before your next follow up appointment.
Are there any restrictions in activity after this procedure?
- Please keep arm restraints in place until notified by the surgeon.
- Your child should avoid rough play, sports or any strenuous activity after surgery until cleared by your physician.
- It is also important to avoid situations where your child may be exposed to other ill children. If your child develops an upper respiratory infection, especially with coughing, please call our office.