Program for Children with Velocardiofacial Syndrome
The Cleft Palate Clinic is partnering with University and Fairview Children’s Hospital experts to form one of the first specialized teams in the country to care for children with Velocardiofacial syndrome (VCFS) or DiGeorge syndrome.
Velocardiofacial syndrome is the most common syndrome associated with a cleft palate, with an estimated 1 in 2,000-4,000 children born with the syndrome. It is also the most common chromosomal condition next to Down syndrome and is associated with more than 180 signs and symptoms, such as cardiac defects, cleft palate, immune deficiency, psychosis, and dental abnormalities.
VCFS occurs when a small part of chromosome 22 is missing or deleted. Pediatric specialists in cardiology, genetics, rheumatology/immunology, psychiatry, plastic surgery, speech-language pathology, audiology, nursing and dentistry are part of the integrated team that provides children and families with access to specialized care in a single day appointment. This team approach also provides opportunities for translational research, with linkage between phenotypes and genotypes, as well as development of evidence-based practice guidelines.