Latest Blogs

Below is a list of blogs written by ACPA members and the National Office Team.

If you are interested in writing a blog, please email Alyssa Kirkman for more information.

*Disclaimer-The American Cleft Palate-Craniofacial Association claims no responsibility for the content published by others on its web site. Published content does not imply endorsement of the organization or the content of the meetings.

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A submucous cleft palate is an opening in the muscles of the soft palate, beneath a thin layer of tissue (mucous membrane). ACPA Family Services published a new booklet, Submucous Cleft Palate, that provides information about this type of cleft from the first sign of symptoms to treatment and care. According to the booklet, a submucous cleft palate is best diagnosed by looking at a combination of signs and symptoms. Take a look at a few of the signs below listed in Submucous Cleft Palate. A person with a submucous cleft palate may have a normal looking palate. It is possible, though, that he or she may have any or all of the following signs: ...
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The 2018 CleftStrong 5K was October 13 in San Antonio, Texas.  The 5 th Annual event is an opportunity for the local community – and virtual racers from around the country – to come together to support those born with cleft lip/palate and other craniofacial conditions, with all proceeds benefiting the American Cleft Palate-Craniofacial Association. Despite the rain, attendees arrived early for the race, dressed for the 80’s theme in vivid colors, exotic headbands, layered socks and neon leggings.  It was amazing to see everyone coming together to race and have fun. View photos from the 2018 CleftStrong 5K Purple Carpet. ACPA Executive Director Wendy-Jo ...
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ACPA is proud to share news about members Francis Smith and Scott Dailey. CU Anschutz Scientist Shares New Book On Challenges & Tenacity "Everyone walks a different path in life, but very few have a similar story to Dr. Francis Joel Smith. He was born with Treacher Collins Syndrome, a condition which develops during pregnancy and affects facial formation. Smith’s birth parents gave him up for adoption. Two parents, who taught him about faith and believing in himself, adopted Smith. His recently released book about his life outlines the challenges he has faced and overcome with tenacity. He is now an PhD Scientist at CU Anschutz, a world renowned speaker ...
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In the United States, it is unusual--but not unheard of--for a child born with a cleft lip and palate to go untreated into adulthood. In this case, a male patient, known as Kris was unable to undergo all the corrective surgeries that would typically be performed on a child with a cleft lip and palate. “I was born with a cleft lip and palate, due to personal circumstances that happened in my teens I wasn’t able to finish all of the corrective surgeries that would typically happen with a cleft patient.” The good news is it’s never too late to treat a cleft lip and palate--even late into adulthood. “Finally, when I was 33 years old, I decided to consult ...
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The new issue of The Cleft Palate-Craniofacial Journal (CPCJ) is now available. All ACPA Members receive a free subscription to CPCJ - just log-in to your ACPA account to access the online version.   Not a member and want journal access?  Join now ($240 for 2018 National Active Membership) or purchase an individual subscription ($324 for print and e-access). Patterns of Orofacial Clefting in New York City From 1983 to 2010: Trends by Racial Background, Birthplace, and Public Health Strategies Sydney C. Butts, MD, Simone Reynolds, MPH, PhD, Lyuba Gitman, MD, Prayag Patel, MD, Michael Joseph, MPH, PhD Opioid Sparing in Cleft Palate Surgery ...
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In July, Bob Tibesar MD, Noelle Morrell SLP, and Kate Pederson, LSW at Children’s Minnesota celebrated the 8 th annual Family Fun Camp for patients and families of our Cleft Lip and Palate and Craniofacial Clinics. Our day-long camp is sponsored by the Stillwater Kiwanis Club and hosted by the Northern Star Boy Scouts. Camp staff and team members provided a day of activities for kids, parents and siblings to connect, share experiences, and test their limits by participating in new challenges. Camp activities include an obstacle course, a climbing wall, shooting, archery, pony rides, and swimming. Campers shared meals, s’mores and skits around the campfire. ...
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Care to Share?

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Thinking about sharing that photo you took after surgery? Hoping you might have an opportunity to showcase your creative side? Look no further, ACPA is here for you. Here at ACPA, we look forward to providing our community with a platform that allows personal expression. We share beautiful ideas, journeys and dreams with one another through a variety of materials including stories, art, photos, poems and more. Andrew's mother, Kati, shared her son’s story with ACPA a few years ago and just recently provided us with a wonderful update. Their story has impacted the ACPA community by inspiring other moms, professionals and patients alike. “We love sharing ...
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ACPA announces the search for a new Editor of The Cleft Palate-Craniofacial Journal (CPCJ). This premiere peer-reviewed, interdisciplinary, international journal is dedicated to current research on etiology, prevention, diagnosis, and treatment in all areas pertaining to craniofacial anomalies. We are currently accepting editor applications for a three-year term commencing January 1st, 2020. CPCJ reports on basic science and clinical research aimed at better elucidating the pathogenesis, pathology, and optimal methods of treatment of cleft and craniofacial anomalies. The journal strives to foster communication and cooperation among professionals from ...
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It was a tropical paradise at the Texas State Aquarium on Friday, July 20, as physicians, patients, parents and staff at Driscoll Children’s Hospital’s Craniofacial and Cleft Center in Corpus Christi, Texas celebrated the fifth annual Craniofacial Reunion with a luau theme. Smiles were the order of the day as Driscoll physicians and staff, dressed in their Hawaiian and Pacific Islands finery, enjoyed seeing their similarly dressed patients in a nonclinical setting and reacquainted themselves with the families. Dressing up is fun when everyone has something to smile about.  This is such a fun celebration every year for our Craniofacial kids
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2018 ACPA Scholarship Recipient Robert was born with a complete unilateral cleft lip and palate. In many situations, his life has come full circle and will continue to do so - from helping a janitor receive dental care who once helped him to working in the medical field one day. His zeal for healthcare and service to others was inspired by his grandfather, who believed that one’s own welfare was interconnected with the welfare of others. For Robert, true happiness is found when he leads with his heart and shares his talents with others. I am profoundly grateful towards the American Cleft Palate-Craniofacial Association for their generous scholarship. I was ...
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ACPA Member Jesse Goldstein, MD, FACS, FAAP has created a low-tech surgical simulator. In Jesse's words: "One of the best parts of my job is finding simple and creative ways to educate my patients, their families, and my trainees. What follows is an educational tool I developed when I was training to help patients and students understand how plastic surgeons use local tissue to repair a cleft palate.  It demonstrates a technique called the Furlow Palatoplasty, sometimes called the double-opposing Z plasty technique.  This technique lengthens the palate, moves important muscles for speech (the levator muscles) into a better position, closes the cleft, and ...
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Art: A Provider’s Perspective Artist: Jack Yu, DMD, MD, MS Ed About the Artist: ACPA Member Jack Yu was born in Taiwan, grew up in Africa, completed undergraduate studies in Indiana, and attended dental and medical school in Philadelphia. Since 1994, he has called Georgia home. “The messages of the drawing are several: ACPA and CPCJ are progressively more global, moving beyond our borders. Children bring out the best in us and we are so very privileged to be able to work with them. Lastly, and importantly, Earth is precious, and we need to embrace, protect and preserve
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ACPA offers educational webinars to cleft and craniofacial care providers worldwide.   Register for a live or on-demand webinar today.   Register at least 10 days before the webinar and use code   EARLYBIRD   to receive the discounted rate. Upcoming webinars include: New Member Orientation/How to Engage in ACPA   September 24, 2018, 3:00 PM ET.    Complimentary webinar.   Register. 22q: An Overview September 27, 2018, 1:00 PM ET.   CE will be available.   Register   . Cleft Lip Repair: Measure Twice Cut Once October 2, 2018, 4:00 PM ET.  ACCME CE will be available.   Register. Implementing a Standardized ...
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Team care is at the heart of ACPA’s mission. Help us spread the word about ACPA Teams by submitting photos of your providers and patients.  We are looking for photos to include in some upcoming materials about ACPA Approved Teams. From a clinical setting to recreational activities, all photos are welcome. In addition to submitting photos, please consider including a brief story or caption.  Your photos and stories will not only further the mission of ACPA, but they will also spread awareness about the importance of team care to families seeking information regarding their next steps. Thank you for your continued support and service to the cleft and craniofacial ...
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Celebrating #PeerReviewWeek2018

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ACPA is proud to celebrate Peer Review Week and the essential role that peer review plays in maintaining scientific quality. Through The Cleft Palate-Craniofacial Journal (CPCJ), ACPA plays an important role in furthering research and science related to cleft lip, cleft palate and craniofacial differences. We'd like to thank all of the professional peer reviewers who contribute to CPCJ and enable us to make such an impact.  Thank you for your service to ACPA and the profession. You are all critical to the success of this world-class publication.  SAGE Publishing , publisher of CPCJ , has shared some great resources this week.  We encourage you to ...
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The new issue of The Cleft Palate-Craniofacial Journal is now available. All ACPA Members receive a free subscription to The Journal - just log-in to your ACPA account to access the online version.   Not a member and want journal access?  Join now ($240 for 2018 National Active Membership) or purchase an individual subscription ($324 for print and e-access). Guideline Values for Minimum Nasal Cross-Sectional Area in Children Maija T. Laine-Alava, DDS, PhD, Siiri Murtolahti, MSc, Ulla K. Crouse, DMD, MSc, PhD, Donald W. Warren, DDS, PhD Problems With Reliability of Speech Variables for Use in Quality Registries for Cleft Lip and Palate—Experiences ...
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Wendy-Jo Toyama, Executive Director at the American Cleft Palate-Craniofacial Association, joined with a variety of professionals at the American Society of Association Executives Annual Meeting on Sunday, August 19, 2018 to moderate the session: “New Role? New Job? What next?!” With more than 100 attendees, the ASAE Session addressed many unknown challenges that come with acquiring a new job, such as the transition and filling the new role. Co-Content Leaders provided attendees with a comprehensive program to ensure a smoother transition with their current or upcoming promotion. The session highlighted opportunities and challenges for success, tactics to ...
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During the month of September, ACPA is joining with the Children’s Craniofacial Association (CCA) to celebrate the 14 th Annual Craniofacial Acceptance Month (CAM). In honor of CAM, we are featuring ACPA publications that provide educational information about craniofacial differences. “Information about Treacher Collins Syndrome” is a fact sheet that provides a basic overview of helpful information from causes to common questions. Many parents often ask, “What should I be doing for my child now?” This fact sheet says: You are best advised to locate a craniofacial center where genetic consultation, evaluation, and treatment planning will be provided ...
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Back to school excitement is in full swing and it’s a perfect time to talk with new friends, teachers and parents about facial differences. September has been designated Craniofacial Acceptance Month and we love promoting this important message of inclusion and understanding. This month’s theme was initiated by Children’s Craniofacial Association , one of our organizational friends that offers incredible support and connections to individuals and families in the craniofacial community. I was privileged to attend CCA’s Annual Family Retreat this summer and experienced first-hand the powerful sense of community fostered at this event. I think if every ...
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Near or far, join the Fifth Annual CleftStrong 5K by participating onsite or as a virtual racer to support those born with cleft lip/palate and other craniofacial differences. The 5K will be held at 8:30 a.m. on Saturday, October 13, 2018 at Los Patios in San Antonio, Texas. All proceeds raised benefit the mission of the American Cleft Palate-Craniofacial Association. All virtual racers can share their experience on social media at #clefstrong5k as they race along from their normal running spot. Upon registration, virtual racers will receive a race packet with this year’s race day shirt. The deadline to register as a virtual racer is September 21. General ...
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