CONTACT: RITA LIDDELL
8788 John Pappajohn Pavilion
Iowa City IA 52242
Release: March 21, 2000
UI Health Care specialist to lead online chat on cleft palates
IOWA CITY, Iowa -- Michael P. Karnell, M.D., University of Iowa associate
professor and speech-language pathologist in the UI Department of Otolaryngology,
will lead an hour-long, online question-and-answer discussion on cleft palate
with a nationwide audience on AmericasDoctor.com from 7 to 8 p.m. (CST) Wednesday,
The online chat will be hosted by AmericasDoctor.com and can be accessed
by entering through the www.AmericasDoctor.com home page under "Upcoming
Cleft palate, together with cleft lip, comprises the fourth most frequent
birth defect in the United States, affecting one out of every 700 newborns.
Over 5,000 babies are born each year with these congenital conditions. A cleft
palate is an opening in the roof of the mouth in which the two sides of the
palate did not fuse, or join together, as the unborn baby was developing.
The majority of clefts appear to be due to a combination of genetics and environmental
factors. A child born with a cleft frequently requires several different types
of services -- such as surgery, dental/orthodontic care, and speech therapy
-- all of which need to be provided in a coordinated manner over a period
Karnell, who is also a faculty member in the UI Department of Speech Pathology
and Audiology, received his medical degree from the UI in 1983 and subsequently
held the position of associate professor of surgery at the University of Chicago,
where he served on the cleft palate craniofacial team and directed the Center
for Speech & Swallowing Disorders. He joined the UI faculty in 1993.
Karnell is an active member of the American Cleft Palate-Craniofacial Association.
He currently is contributing to the development of a multicenter Craniofacial
Outcomes Registry funded by the National Institutes of Health. His clinical
expertise is in voice disorders, head and neck cancer, and cleft palate.
A calendar of other upcoming chats by UI Health Care professionals and dialogue
from past chats can be accessed by logging on to www.uihealthcare.com and
clicking on the AmericasDoctor.com logo at the bottom of the page.
UI Health Cares partnership with AmericasDoctor.com is part of an increasing
trend in health care toward enhancing consumer services through the Internet.
According to recent statistics compiled by Cyber Dialogue, a New York firm
that tracks Internet commerce, there are approximately 22 million World Wide
Web users seeking health information over the Internet. Cyber Dialogue projects
that number to increase to 33 million over the next year.
University of Iowa Health Care describes the partnership between the
UI College of Medicine and the UI Hospitals and Clinics and the patient care,
medical education and research programs and services they provide.