Cleft and Craniofacial Fellowship Program under CCI

       1. Cleft Surgical fellowship (2 positions per year)


The Fellowship program at centers of CCI in India aims at training the Oral and Maxillofacial and Plastic Surgeons in the management and rehabilitation of Cleft lip and palate and other Craniofacial anomaly patients. It helps the trainee surgeons to understand the wide array of complex craniofacial defects and malformations seen in the pediatric population to adulthood and the principles of management of the same. Apart from the above, the surgeons are also trained in fine soft tissue management in Oral and Craniofacial area, principles and protocols of cleft surgery and skeletal surgeries that enhance the cosmetic harmony of the face. The training also provides the candidates an insight into the Reconstructive facial surgery for congenital anomalies using the state of art technology and techniques.
Most of the surgeries performed are as per the international standard and as per the directions and protocols put forward by CCI and Prof. Hermann Sailer, the founding President of the CCI. Apart from this, Prof H.Sailer`s “ transfer of Swiss know-How principle” based interaction and advise for almost all of the craniofacial cases is done prior to planning and execution as a part of standardization in surgeries in compliance with Zurich protocols.

Eligibility of Fellowship program:

The candidates applying for the program should have completed
1. Bachelors in Dental Surgery and Masters in Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery or Plastic Surgery prior to application for the program.
2. The medical qualification (MBBS) or the dental qualification respectively will be an added advantage if an applicant possesses the same.

Mandatory Certificate:

The candidate should have passed the qualifying examination of MDS in Oral and maxillofacial surgery or equivalent degree from any college registered under the Dental Council of India/ Medical council of India and should submit the evidence of the same (Provisional Degree certificate or Marks Sheet) along with the application form prior to admission.

Duration of the Program:

The period of training of the certified Fellowship in Cleft surgery is for 1 academic year. On an understanding basis and depending on the discretion of centre Director and CCI,the program can be extended up to 3 years for better training in advanced craniofacial surgery.
It is not allowed to be simultaneously integrated in another external training program.

Commencement of the training:

The course shall start from the April 1st of the academic year or it may depend on Centre directive and availability of the post.

Fellowship Program- selection and work

Selection Basis:

The candidates applied for the program will be selected based on their merit and after a personal interview by the Surgeons of the Cleft team prior to the enrollment. The candidates are required to sign a MOU/ Contract of 1 year with MCCC- CCI and are required to fulfill the same norms during the course.

Maintenance of Log Book:

The candidates are required to maintain a record of the Clinical training being done and assisted during this period.
In addition, a record of the Conferences and the workshops attended during this period should be maintained.
The candidates are required to maintain report of all the scientific academic activities (Paper/ poster presentations, Publications etc) that they take part in during this phase. All publications must be also accountable to CCI and all the records of the research are a property of the MCCC-CCI.


There is no Vacation during the course.

Leave eligibility:

The candidates are allowed One Casual leave per month and 12 days of Medical leave throughout the year.

Minimum requirement of hands on Surgical training in 1 year

Case Type Number to be assisted Number to be performed
Cleft Lip 50 25
Cleft palate 50 25
Cleft alveolus 25 15
Iliac bone graft Harvest 25 10
Rib Graft harvest 10 5
Cleft Rhinoplasties 10 3
Osteotomies and Distraction 10 5
Subcranial Lefort II/ Lefort III 2 1

Work Schedule:

It is important to have at most discipline and timing punctuality during the entire period of training. The Fellow will be scrutinized for their sincerity and honesty towards their professional work assigned to them.
The Fellow will be primarily responsible for maintenance of Ward patients, postoperative management, admissions and discharges as per the directions of Project Director. He or she will be allotted camp duties in different parts of South India (may be overnight) for cleft patient screening and transport patients to operating centers. The expenditure and accommodation for camps will be borne by the centre.
The working hours is from 7.30 to 5pm in the evening, but this does not necessarily allows the fellow to abstain from responsibility of patient after care for 24 hours as and when need arises.
The fellow should be active part of a team during ward rounds and should carry an exact number of In patients and other activities in the ward and should maintain a regular vigil on record maintenance and photographs as it is very important CCI activities.
The fellow will be encouraged to bring out new ideas in surgery and all help will be rendered if fellow wishes to do a research in some aspects of cleft surgery.

Sample timing of work in MCCC

Ward Rounds- 7: 30 to 8:30am
Operating days: 5 days a week from 8.30 to 2pm
Evening ward round by fellows at 8pm for postoperative assessment
Saturday and Sunday ward rounds to be carried out by the fellows
Cleft OP: 7:30AM- 1:00PM (to coordinate the activity with Orthodontic and other departments)
(On rotation)
On Call duty –As and when Necessary

Expected level of competency at the end of program:

A trainee fellow must be able to handle independently the basic Cleft and Craniofacial Surgery. He/She should be able to manage ward and day to day patient management efficiently (including basic medical problems) and some understanding of administrative responsibilities if he or she wishes to continue or set up a cleft centre in the future.


The certificate of completion is awarded at the end of 1 year when the fellows fulfill the criteria needed accredited by CCI and MCCC.

Dr. Titus Thomas Kuttappan, MDS
Dr. Sundar Ramalingam, MDS
Dr. M. Sathish Kumar, MDS
Dr. S. Nachiappan, MDS
Dr. Thomas Zachariah, MDS
Dr. Mathew PC, MDS
Dr. Assane Abdou, BDS
Dr. Sneha Pendem, MDS
Dr. R .Narendar, MDS
Dr. Amelia Christabel, MDS
Dr. U. Rajesh Kumar, MDS
Dr. Anupam Arun Dugal, MDS
Dr. Boubakar Ide, BDS
Dr. P. Senthil Murugan, MDS
Dr. P. Divya Nagalakshmi, MDS
Dr. P. Preetam, MDS

       2. Cleft Orthodontic fellowship (1 position per year)


The main aim of the fellowship programme in Cleft Lip and Palate in Orthodontics is to gain knowledge and skill to understand and treat cleft lip and palate patients so that after Orthodontic Treatment the patient will have an esthetically good profile and occlusion
The fellowship programme in cleft lip and palate orthodontics will be conducted at orthodontic & Craniofacial cleft clinic, Meenakshi Ammal Dental College and Hospital, Chennai, India.
The candidates are selected on the basis of the interest and enthusiasm towards cleft orthodontics and learn about the various types of craniofacial anomalies and their treatment modalities and management of complex cleft cases.
At the end of the fellowship programme the candidate will be examined both in theory as well as in practical by the panel of orthodontists.
The duration of the fellowship is for about one and a half year. The candidate is eligible to become a fellow of the orthodontic and craniofacial cleft federation after assessment and will be certified by the director of OCCF.

Fellow membership:

An orthodontist after completing his/her Master degree (M.D.S) shall be eligible to apply for this fellowship programme.