What is it?

Maxillary hypoplasia, is an underdevelopment of the bones of the upper jaw. It is associated with Crouzon syndrome, Angelman syndrome, as well as Fetal alcohol syndrome. It can also be associated with Cleft lip and cleft palate. Some people could develop it due to poor dental extractions.

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Additional names

This group contains additional names:
- Maxillary deficiency

Signs & symptoms

The underdevelopment of the bones in the upper jaw, which gives the middle of the face a sunken look. This same underdevelopment can make it difficult to eat and can lead to complications such as Nasopharyngeal airway restriction. This restriction causes forward head posture which can then lead to back pain, neck pain, and numbness in the hands and arms. The nasopharyngeal airway restriction can also lead to Sleep apnea and snoring. Sleep apnea can lead to heart problems, endocrine problems, increased weight, and cognition problems, among other issues.


Diagnosed mainly on visual inspection. The cheekbones and nose appear flat with thin lips and the lower jaw appears to be protruding even though it is normal in size. Computed tomography scan CT scan can be performed to compare the size of the Maxilla and Mandible. Computed tomography scan.


Corrective surgery is the most common treatment to correct this disorder. It involves the repositioning of the upper jaw to align with the lower jaw, to provide symmetry. It is best performed during childhood, if possible, to allow the jaw to recover and develop. The surgery may be performed in consultation with an Orthodontist who works on repositioning the teeth in the mouth. Severe cases require surgical correction after completing craniofacial growth around age 17-21. Milder forms without obstruction can be corrected for cosmetic reasons using veneers, snap in smiles, and overlay dentures

☝️ This is not a substitute for professional medical advice. Please consult with your physician before making any medical decision.

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