Octomom Neglects Medical Care for Child With Cleft Lip Which May Cause Speech Defect


Otomom Nadya Suleman  was on the  Today show with her  out of control brood. The kids were running around and being babysat by  Today Show anchors Natalie Morales,  David Gregory, and Ann Curry as well as Nadya’s oldest daughter. 

While  all of the kids were adorable,  they were undisciplined to the point that one of them ran backstage and had to be retrieved by the oldest daughter Aliya. 

Another child  fell in between a Today Show set and had to be  picked up by Ann Curry.While the  scene was disturbing enough, there was something else that I observed that upset me greatly.

 One of Suleman’s octups who was born with a cleft lip has not yet had surgery to repair his lip. This  is unconscionable ! Nadya needs to be reported for child neglect for not taking care of this child’s medical condition in my view.

Cleft  lip repair is usually done  when the child  between 6 and 12 months.It   is essential to do the repair when the child is that young in order to  help eliminate speech problems and feeding  problems as the  child develops.

 If the surgery is put off until much later,  proper development of   speech skills may suffer.  The child may not be able to adequately develop their bilabial sounds of p, b, m, and w. Nadya”s  child is now 2 1/2 years old. He needed to have had the surgery at least a year ago.

If Nadya has put off this baby’s surgery, what else has she put off with regard to the health needs of the other children? I hope he is being monitored on a regular basis by social workers. Someone has to look in on her to make sure these kids are all right and to make sure this baby’s lip will be repaired soon. www.drlillianglass.com


43 thoughts on “Octomom Neglects Medical Care for Child With Cleft Lip Which May Cause Speech Defect

  1. It’s most important!
    My daughter was born with a cleft lip and palate and I put her in speech therapy when she was 2 and ofcourse she had her surgeries but now,you would never know she had a cleft lip and palate? She’s 32 now and Everyon is shocked if it comes up!

  2. Hi Dr. Glass, I believe it was reported on the show that her little boy is scheduled to have surgery this week to correct his partial cleft lip. I’m not sure why this has taken so long to do; however, doctors sometimes wait for further facial bone and jaw development to prevent the necessity of more surgeries in the future. I do agree his speech development most likely suffered as well as his psychosocial development.

  3. Oh that’s just horrible. That child should have had surgery when an infant. Those types of surgeries usually start very early when still a baby. What is her problem. The state would pay, I’m almost certain of that. Even if not, she has had a slew of help with other things, and plus the fact she has made money from interviews. That is sickening.

  4. Nadya is more concerned with telling everyone that she is “not on welfare” than she is with properly supervising her children. That interview was a disaster. I doubt that the Today Show ever has her back in their studio. From the pics of her home, the kids have been allowed to destroy it. When Nadya brags that she does it all by herself, someone needs to fill her in that even DCFS requires more than 1 person to supervise 14 kids, 8 of which are under the age of 3. It just isn’t safe to refuse to hire sitters and helpers to assist any mom with that many kids. I hope somebody is watching over Nadya’s shoulders!

    1. Maybe she needs to imagine she has a Zanny the Nanny,LoL Sorry but I had to say it,LoL

  5. Nadya has had both a boob job and a tummy tuck since the birth of her litter. According to Nadya (per appearance on Oprah), she also had to have manicures, pedicures, and a gym membership so that she could work out with her personal trainer. First things first, Dr. Glass!!! A girl has to look her best when she begs for more money!

    1. Don’t forget the 400 dollar mink eyelashes, and the closet full of designer clothes and too small work out gear.

  6. Dr Drew..stated last night that she was doing a good job..but needed help..The Today show should of gotten the information correct a head of time when they asked 8, two years old to come and interview..what did they think? they were going to sit in a pod and sing songs? This was their fault and it was up to them to make the set safe for these children. I saw the show. She said her child would be getting surgery this week for the cleft lip. She clearly needs help..look at the house…So, we don’t help her..why..we give funds to others that have had 3/4/5/6 kids…but not her that has the living 8 in the USA! They are here why punish them..she and they need help.

    1. Debi- No doubt she could receive assitance if she applied, but she flatly stated she would ‘never be on welfare’ along with a few other self-righteous statements as her brood was destroying the studio.

      1. you self righteous bitches you should have that many kids and handle them. I do agree the little one needs his lip repaired. I know she had them because she could and wanted a family. Who does not. quit being such self centered biggotts.

  7. I have a lot of negative opinions on Nadya Suleman, but I wouldn’t say that the 2yr olds were badly disciplined… I think they behaved pretty much like eight 2 yr olds on a set would… wanting to explore.

    However, the show (and Nadya) should have anticipated this and had nannies on hand, toys they hadn’t seen before, the other things a typical mom would think of (like the duggars who put an educational video on a laptop to distract their littlest ones)

    I do agree that it is disgraceful her son clearly hasn’t had his surgery (unless of course it was as someone else supposed, that there is a doctor having a reason for it)… it should have come before all her starbucks’ coffees, her nails getting done, and all the other things I’ve seen her put ahead of necessities.

    As for why we don’t help her… it’s pretty clear. We don’t help her because she knowingly went into this… she had six children already, she knew how little money she had. No doctor should have allowed her to continue being pregnant. I’m not saying that she should have had to donate her eggs, or destroy them… but no one should have implanted them in her, because it is simply unethical at that point.

    Honestly, I think there is where a large part of the responsibility for these children lies… in the doctor who implanted them. He should be forced to pay for what he has done… and contribute to them.

    It is far different with other parents who have these high-order multiples because the doctors in those cases make sure the parents aren’t already way overwhelmed by more children than they can handle.

    1. Gee every one else can have starbucks coffees and a bottle of nail polish is like six bucks. Maybe she does not have her hair done every minute. I have seen people with hardly any food manage to afford cigarettes and beer.

  8. This is very disturbing and she does need to be reported for neglect. You last blogged about this in April 2010 when the boy was 13 mos. I was gobsmacked that at that age he had not already undergone the initial repair.

    Often in unilateral cleft lips there are also nasal deformities that require surgical repair at the same time as the initial surgery. Muscle weakness and learning difficulty can become apparent as a child tries to overcome their defect, whether they have had surgery to correct the defect or not.

    Babies Dx. with cleft lip are more likely to have hearing problems. This must be evaluated and if Dx. promptly treated. ‘Glue Ear’ is a condition where a gluey substance builds up behind the eardrum, the part of the ear that acts as a divide between the outer and middle ear. Build up of fluid develops due to the eustachian tube being misshapen, which would usually work to get rid of excess fluid. ‘Glue ear’ can be easily treated with antibiotics and often requires a plastic tube to be inserted into the eardrum to drain the excess fluid. This is a simple surgical procedure. If not done a permanent hearing loss will result.

    A hearing test should have been performed within 6 months after birth, whether there are any apparent symptoms of hearing loss or not. I find it hard to believe that this boy has had these proper evaluations. If he had them he also would have had the surgery.

    The surgery that this boy requires will be MUCH more traumatic for him at his current age. Post-operatively during the 1st 10 days a special feeder device is used to protect the newly repaired lip. Post-op instructions include absolutely no touching at all of the srugical lip area. Any object that a child puts in or around the mouth including little fingers can ruin the repair. Therefore, the child must wear arm restraints (“splints”) for the first 10 days after surgery.These must not be removed unless done by a physician. The child must be kept on his back for one week to avoid having the lip rub on the sheet or carpet. Can you imagine how traumatic the above will be for this boy. Initial repairs are done today as early as 12 weeks but almost never after 3 months of age these days.

    I have never in my career seen a child in the US who is 2 1/2 yr old and has not had surgical repair. Fresh Start is an organization in San Diego that provides reconstructive surgery and related services to children with such a birth defect. All services are provided free. The services include surgery, dental, and speech therapy. I’m furious with Nadia – she does not neglect her exercise work outs but surgery for this child wasn’t a high priority? Unconscionable. I sure do hope that it’s true that this child is scheduled for surgery next week, but if I remember correctly, she pulled that number last year and now we see that nothing has been done. Someone needs to notify the authorities pronto!

  9. I question her claim to get no “WELFARE.” Someone needs to show just how much she gets in aid and if her kids are getting their vaccinations and checkups. Every time I watch her I see deception. I think she thought she was going to be Kate +8 or something.

    1. I don’t quite understand Nadya’s claim to not receive any aid/welfare from the State of CA. How could she possibly afford the $15,000 per month that it costs to support 14 kids without help of some kind be it welfare or donations?

  10. Dr. Glass- So glad you chose to write on this topic to give us a breather from the Casey Anthony fisco! Although I must say this was a pathetic interview. She is so obviously OVERWHELMED BEYOND BELIEF and REFUSES to recognize it. A person can ONLY spread themselves SO THIN when taking care of kids before their SAFETY and MENTAL WELL BEING are affected!!

    She needs to give up most of those children for adoption. If she really cared for them, other than HERSELF, she would.

  11. Anyone else sick and tired of supporting those who have too many kids they know they cannot take care of?

    She was paid a lot of money, is on disability, (bad back), but was able to get pregnant, along with all the public assistance she already receives.

    When does it stop?

  12. We didn’t realize our son was hearing practically nothing his first 2 years, when we finally got him surgery to repair the canals it affected his speech right up to grade 8 (with speech therapy every year from k – 8) he still, to this day, at 23 mispronounces his r’s when he is tired. So, you are 100% right in saying it needs to be taken care of asap or his speech may never be corrected.

  13. Dr. Glass, usually Dr’s wait when the cleft is found in such a young child. The damage is not great. I believe this child will get get the
    surgery when the Dr’s feel it the right time. This is not profound.
    Please do a bit more research. The Mother is following the Dr’s. advice.

    At least she is not pimping them out like the Gosselin woman. This is about the first we have seen them and there is no shrieking or Threatening these children.. No pinching, no nasty looks from Mother to keep them in line. My goodness, two year olds wandering.

    Yeah for you Nadia, did not see fear in her childrens faces. Not a one of them glanced at Mom to determine if they were toast or not.
    No denying a lousy drink of water that I could determine. Unlike the

    Witch of the World. Yes, Two year old babis wander during a TV interview.

  14. Dr. Glass, usually Dr’s wait when the cleft is found in such a young child. The damage is not great. I believe this child will get the
    surgery when the Dr’s feel it the right time. This is not profound.
    Please do a bit more research. The Mother is following the Dr’s. advice.

    At least she is not pimping them out like the Gosselin woman. This is about the first we have seen them and there is no shrieking or Threatening these children.. No pinching, no nasty looks from Mother to keep them in line. My goodness, two year olds wandering.

    Yeah for you Nadia, I did not see fear in her childrens faces when she told them it was time to sit. They sat.. Not a one of them glanced at Mom to determine if they were toast or not.

    No denying a lousy drink of water that I could determine. Unlike the

    Witch of the World. Yes, Two year old babis wander during a TV interview.

  15. My post went through before I finished editing for spelling, etc.
    I have no clue how it was posted before I finished.
    So there it is….undone, unfinished, unedited.

  16. Nadia is doing the best job she can. It is more than apparent to me that she likes her children. Loves them. Yes, she has to be overwhelmend but she accepts them. Yes they are multiples, yes the Mother is flawed, BUT, I saw no abuse in that interview.

    These children were not anticipating rebuke from the Mother. They were just being……….I do not know her. What I do know is, I saw not one child afraid for a Mother’s wrath. Quite the opposite. For that I appluude her. Compared to the Gosselin witch, there will be no Mommie Dearest books written about her……..She is who she is, flakey yes, rotten Kate, NO.
    She has not paraded her children for our viewing pleasure. At least she has scruples.

    I applaud her.

    1. SusanNH- That is exactly the point. Her “best” is NOT ENOUGH to raise all these children. Just imagine if we gave you 100 children to raise… you’d most certainly come to the conclusion that, not matter how much you loved them, that you just could not physically care for them all yourself without any help. Sadly, she is in the same boat with 14 children, and just refuses to see it because of her narcissistic selfish attitude. She’d rather that “her little villiage” become the ‘train wreck’ that everyone wants to see than consider the real needs of her children. It’s so very sad for those kids. Not to mention the oldest one (what is she, 8?) having too much pressure thrust upon her as Mommy Little Assistant. Sure she could help with 1 or 2, but not 13.

    2. What is your obsession with Kate Gosselin? This discussion is about Jonah’s overdue surgery. Do you really know why those poor little babies are so passive and “just being…”? Because they’re retarded! Yeah–go ahead and applaud the neglect Octomom’s piled onto those hapless creatures while she prattles on and on about what a super-mom she is. The best she can do will never be good enough. Those poor kids (all of them) need to be taken away from their “mother”.

  17. Timing of cleft lip and palate repair is a subject of some controversy in the medical community, as some compromise must always be made regarding risk, facial growth, scarring, speech development, and psychological factors.

    Although there are some differing schools of thought on the matter, most plastic surgeons believe that the ideal patient age for undergoing cleft palate repair surgery is between 6 to 18 months of age (though the favored age for cleft lip repair is generally much earlier, at about 10 to 12 weeks old). This age appears to be advantageous partially because healing times are fast, the patient’s memory of the recovery process is short, and the area around the cleft hasn’t had much of a chance to develop surrounding tissues in an abnormal manner.

    Also important is that this period of time precedes any significant language development. In fact, if the surgery is put off until much later than 3 years of age, development of speech skills may suffer. It is also conceivable that the young child who is unhindered by this defect may find it easier and more natural to develop normal and healthy nutritional habits at this early age.

    The main disadvantage to undergoing cleft palate repair at an earlier age is that the risk of complication during and after surgery appears to correlate directly with the patient’s body weight at the time of surgery (largely due to anesthesia-related risks). For this reason, surgery on infants is proportionately riskier than surgery performed on older children.

    As always, only you and your doctor can weigh the pros and cons to determine what may be the best course of action in your child’s case. It is also important to be aware that as your child grows, additionally surgery may be necessary.

    Cleft Palate or Lip, Consumer Information Sheet, American Society of Plastic Surgeons: http://www.plasticsurgery.org/patients_consumers/procedures/CleftLipPalate.cfm

  18. Thanks for addressing the situation. Also disturbing was the flight back. (I don’t think any flight with 10 children including the tups was appropriate). The mother got into a verbal fight with another passenger when the passenger asked her to quiet the children down. Looking at photos it didn’t appear that the mother made any provisions
    to occupy the children during a long flight (books, toys, snacks). The mother only carried a purse-not even a diaper bag and people in flight also complained about the smell.

  19. My 15 month old son has a submucous cleft palate that has yet to be repaired. It will be repaired before he is 18 months old. The only reason it hasn’t been repaired is because he has airway issues and we wanted to wait until allergy season was over to change the way he breathes. To not repair a cleft lip, a surgery that is usually done before 6 months of age, is insane! That poor child’s speech! Get on medicade lady, because clearly you need it!

  20. This is another time bomb waiting to happen. Why isn’t social services more on top of this fiasco? The kids sure turned out adorable but I don’t believe Nadia’s many lies of how she has no help at all and works etc etc. This woman is so clearly unstable and its a shame more people are paying attention to Casey instead of getting these kids some help! Nadia says never goes out, seems to have no support system what so ever and is going to have a breakdown of some sort if there are no interventions. Thanks for posting this Dr Glass, maybe more attention can help save one of these little lives because there is no sane person who could raise all those little boys alone, let alone Nadia who is already half way to the straight jacket.

  21. Dr. Drew Pinsky, a psychiatrist is going to have her on his show next week ( a rehab show?). He has stated in the past that she is “our” problem and that “we” need to help her find a solution! What do you think would be a solution now? Do you think CPS is already involved and providing services through their special circumstances funds, possibly having placed them in school and mandating she seek further training and/or employment?

  22. If you children aren’t disciplined, then it’s virtually impossible to keep them safe, and that’s a parent’s job. CPS needs to take this kids away from her. Anybody up for an adotion?

  23. Whythe heck would she? As long as there is a very visible defect on one of her children, she can milk the ‘poor me, look what a good person I am caring for a handicapped child’. What she has done to that poor child is criminal and she needs to be accountable-that is child neglect.
    And someone needs to remind her AGAIN that WIC is welfare. She is a welfare mama and another reminder of what a crappy state CA is by them not removing those poor children from that situation.

    And can someone please tell me why the sperm donor isn’t paying child support. I don’t care about the agreement with her and the donor, that is between them. He should be paying child support for his litter.

  24. Here’s an old article from People Magazine while Jonah was still in the hospital regarding his lip- to use for reference on what the doctors who saw him had to say back then!
    I guess nobody can force parents to get this type of surgery for their child.


  25. Yes, that’s very strange that the child’s lip has not been repaired. It’s a very small defect, and looks small enough that it may not interrupt the whole of the muscle around the mouth. We’re commenting here on someone who’s priorities in life are . . . . erm, disturbing. I think the tiny cleft is the least of this child’s problems if you know what I mean. But without a reason to have not had it repaired, it is very negligent of her. I can’t imagine SOMEONE hasn’t offered to pay for it, for gosh sakes, I almost wonder if she’s refusing.

  26. She stated on the Today show Jonah is having the surgery Saturday (yesterday or next week or…?)
    Here are links to “Magic Mirror” she also mentioned which coincidentally was founded by her “agent/former porn star’s” plastic surgeon Dr. Niccole.
    There are several organizations that will do the repairs for free but she claims she’s had insurance all her life/Kaiser! (MediCal covered her multi million tab for her prehospitalization-3 months and their births-she must have forgotten about)



  27. I, for one, cannot applaud Nadya. She is selfish to the max and had these kids to fulfill herself, yes, herself. She has admitted it and must be filled with regret. This family is a disaster waiting to happen. I have experience in child welfare and believe me, Nadya needs someone watching over her shoulder and another adult or two in her home 24/7 just to provide safety.

  28. I have just read this article about the octomom “negelating” her child with cleft lip , to be completely honest my son was born with cleft lip to and as the surgery came around i wanted to back out too because in a child’s eyes you don’t know what your intentions were as to why they needed the surgery they could take it as we as mothers didn’t like their faces the way they were. Yes, i went through with it but second guess it everyday so i don’t she was negelected her child i think she was trying towait for that child to decide.

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