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Prenat Diagn. 2009 Sep;29(9):833-9. doi: 10.1002/pd.2293.

Prenatal diagnosis of orofacial clefts, National Birth Defects Prevention Study, 1998-2004.

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  • 1National Center on Birth Defects and Developmental Disabilities, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Atlanta, GA 30333, USA.



The aims of this study were to determine how frequently orofacial clefts were diagnosed prenatally and to investigate factors associated with prenatal diagnosis.


We included 2298 mothers from the National Birth Defects Prevention Study, each of whom gave birth to a child with an orofacial cleft, and assessed associated factors using logistic regression.


The frequencies of prenatal diagnosis for cleft lip and palate, cleft lip only, and cleft palate only were 33.3%, 20.3%, and 0.3%, respectively. Among cases with cleft lip with or without cleft palate, cleft type, geographic location, maternal body mass index, household income, year of infant's birth, and presence of multiple birth defects were significantly associated with receiving a prenatal diagnosis.


In the majority of infants with orofacial clefts, a prenatal diagnosis was not made. Receiving a prenatal diagnosis was significantly associated with several infant and maternal characteristics.

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