Objectives: To assess the anatomic and functional outcome of underlay cartilage myringoplasty in children with cleft palate, at different postoperative periods compared with a patients-matched control group
Study Design: Case control study, tertiary referral center.
Methods: An otologic database was used to select children with cleft palate and perforated tympanic membrane who underwent myringoplasty between 1995 and 2012. These subjects were matched with control patients, without cleft palate, using the following criteria: age, size of perforation, status of contralateral ear, and status of middle ear mucosa. Charts were reviewed for the following: patients characteristics, preoperative findings, surgical data, postoperative anatomic and functional outcomes, and reinterventions. The postoperative findings were divided into 5 different periods.
Results: A group of 32 cleft palate patients as well as 32 control patients were included in this study, with a mean follow up of 63.6 ± 41 months. There were no differences between the groups in anatomic success as it was achieved in 84% in both groups. No differences were seen in functional outcome when compared with each different postoperative period. Using the last available audiogram, the postoperative mean air conduction and the air-bone gap were significantly worse in the cleft group compared with the control group, respectively, 26.1 ± 13.7 dB versus 18.4 ± 10.1 dB, p = 0.042; and 16.5 ± 9.4 dB and 11.3 ± 6.4 dB, p = 0.046. Additionally, the functional success was significantly worse in the cleft group; 58% versus 87% in the control group (OR, 5.5 [95% CI, 1.22–24.81], p = 0.027).
Conclusion: Children with cleft palate can benefit from cartilage underlay myringoplasty in terms of closure of tympanic membrane, although there is a worse functional outcome.