This team of experts comes together for the purpose of evaluating your child’s current medical, dental, and psychosocial development. The team will make recommendations for how to best to coordinate care and develop a treatment plan for your child. The goal of our Team is to provide the best treatment that is available today so that your child will be good-looking and healthy.

John F. Teichgraeber MD, FACS

Co-Director, Texas Cleft-Craniofacial Clinic
Professor, Division of Pediatric Plastic and Craniofacial Surgery

john-teichgraeberJohn  Teichgraeber, MD, is the Director of the Division of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery in the Department of Pediatric Surgery at the University of Texas Medical School. He attended Stanford University and Williams College for his undergraduate education.  While attending Harvard Graduate School of Business Administration he switched his career path to medicine. He graduated from Emory University Medical School and completed his ENT residency at Emory University Hospitals followed by an ENT fellowship at MD Anderson Cancer Center.  He decided to continue his training to specialize in Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery doing an additional residency at UT Medical School and then another year of training in craniofacial surgery. He has served as Director of the UT Cleft and Craniofacial Team since 1996.  He is Board Certified in both Otolaryngology and in Plastic Surgery.  Among his many honors and awards are Dean’s Teaching Excellence Awards, Best Doctors in America (2005-2006, 2011-2012) and the House of Charity Humanitarian of the Year Award.  He continues to go on medical mission trips to treat children born with cleft lips and palates.

Dr. Teichgraeber has many loves in addition to his wife and two daughters. He is an avid golfer and a gourmet cook.  Before settling on a career in medicine, he had worked as a US Park Ranger and remains an outdoor enthusiast. He is committed to obtaining the best possible outcomes for children born with craniofacial disorders and proud of the wonderful team of specialists who are part of the UT Cleft and Craniofacial Team.

Matthew R. Greives MD

Assistant Professor, Pediatric Plastic & Craniofacial Surgery

Matthew Greives 6836 (1)Dr. Matthew Greives is an Assistant Professor of Pediatric Plastic Surgery at the University of Texas Medical School at Houston. He was originally born and raised in rural Indiana and then received his undergraduate degree in Biochemistry from Washington University in St. Louis, MO. Following this, he obtained his medical degree from New York University School of Medicine in New York, NY graduating with honors and working in the Laboratory for Microvascular Research and Tissue Engineering through the Department of Plastic Surgery. He then completed an integrated plastic surgery residency at the University of Chicago Hospital in Chicago, IL. During his final year there, he spent a clinical elective in Ear Reconstruction with Dr. Francoise Firmin in Paris, France. This was followed by a year as the Pediatric and Craniofacial Plastic Surgery fellow at the Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh and the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center under Dr. Joseph Losee.

Dr. Greives has a special interest in Cleft Lip and Palate care and surgery, Craniosynostosis, Orthognathic Surgery, Neonatal airway surgery, Craniofacial Distraction, and Ear Reconstruction. He is also involved with the care of patients with vascular anomalies and other soft tissue injuries, both congenital and acquired. His research interests include surgical outcomes of patients with craniofacial and cleft anomalies as well as translational tissue engineering solutions to combat many of the problems encountered in these same patient populations.

In his free time, Dr. Greives enjoys staying active, including biking, swimming, and playing in a local volleyball league.  As an avid food junkie, he also enjoys cooking, and is currently diving into the fantastic food scene that Houston has to offer.  Any suggestions for new and interesting restaurants are always welcome.

Jaime Gateno DDS, MD

Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery

gatenoJaime Gateno, DDS, MD, is the Chairman of the Department of Oral Surgery, The Methodist Hospital and Professor of Clinical Surgery at Weill Medical College, Cornell University.  He obtained his dental degree from the University of Panama and his Medical Degree from the Medical College of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia.  He completed a general surgery residence at the Eastern Virginia School of Medicine, and his Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery Residency and an advanced Dentistry Fellowship at the University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia. He has served on the Houston faculties for UT Dental Branch, UT Medical School, Baylor Medical School, and Cornell University. He has received many academic awards in addition to awards for excellence in surgery and teaching. His research has been published in many medical journals including Journal of Craniofacial Surgery, Journal of Oral Maxillofacial Surgery, Cleft Palate-Craniofacial Journal and the Journal of Neurosurgery. He has directed the OMFS services for the U.T. Cleft Team since 1994.

Dr. Gateno and his wife have two sons.  He is a long distance runner and has completed many marathons.  He has a special love for the work he does with the UT Cleft Team.

Randy Ellis DDS, MS

Orthodontics and Dentistry

IMG_1539Randy Ellis, DDS, MS grew up in Pearland, Texas. Upon receiving a football scholarship, he attended the University of Notre Dame where he received a Bachelor of Science degree. Dr. Ellis graduated from the University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston – Dental Branch (UTHSC) with his dental degree then completed an additional two-year residency program in Pediatric Dentistry.  Seven years later he returned to UT for his Certificate of Orthodontics and a Master of Science degree. Dr. Ellis is one of a very few dually trained specialists in the country – combining an expertise in orthodontics as well as in pediatric dentistry.  He currently serves as a faculty member at the UTHSC in the Department of Orthodontics and directs the orthodontic services for UT Cleft and Craniofacial Team.

Dr. Ellis and his wife, Selena, have three children: Erin, Matthew and Shannon.

Bhavini Acharya BDS, MPH

Assistant Professor, Department of Pediatric Dentistry

bhavini-acharyaBhavini Acharya, BDS, MPH, is a Board Certified Pediatric Dentist. She is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Pediatric Dentistry at UT Houston School of Dentistry and has held this position since 2008. Dr. Acharya completed her pediatric dental training as well as a general practice residency program in dentistry at the Louisiana State University, School of Dentistry in New Orleans. She received a Master’s in Public Health from the University of Alabama, Birmingham, School of Public Health. Aside from teaching the specialty to the dental students and residents she practices at the UT Dentists pediatric dental faculty at the Houston Medical Center. She is also a member of the Cleft and Craniofacial team where she is involved with pre-surgical molding of infants with cleft lip and palate.


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Stephen Fletcher DO

Associate Professor, Department of Pediatric Surgery

stephen-fletcherStephen Fletcher, DO,  is an Associate Professor in the Department of Pediatric Surgery. Dr. Fletcher received his doctorate of osteopathic medicine from North Texas State University Health Science Center, Texas College of Osteopathic Medicine. He completed his neurosurgery residency at Oklahoma Osteopathic Hospital and Memorial Hermann Hospital, and completed a fellowship in pediatric neurosurgery at Dallas Children’s Hospital. Dr. Fletcher is board certified in neurosurgery by the American Osteopathic Board of Surgery, and has a special interest in brain tumors and vascular disorders in children. Dr. Fletcher’s research interests include: Chiari Malformation in children, comparative studies of canine and pediatric brain tumors, medical management of trauma-associated brain swelling and attempts at culturing brain tumor cell lines in collaboration with The University of Texas MD Anderson Children’s Cancer Center. His current research is in canine brain tumors comparing these to human tumors so as to develop novel therapies applicable to both.

Stephen Fletcher was a rodeo competitor in his school days and worked as an auto mechanic.    He was supporting his young family on his mechanic’s salary  when he made the tough decision to leave a good job to take the chance on medical school.  He is a licensed pilot and would like to have more time to fly.

David Sandberg MD

Professor, Chief, Division of Pediatric Neurosurgery

david-sandbergDavid Sandberg, MD, is the Director of Pediatric Neurosurgery at UT Health Medical School where he holds joint appointments as an associate professor in the departments of Neurosurgery and Pediatric Surgery. Dr. Sandberg comes from Miami Children’s Hospital and the University of Miami Miller School of Medicine, where he was a voluntary associate professor of clinical neurological surgery and pediatrics. His major clinical interests include pediatric brain tumors, minimally invasive endoscopic approaches to brain tumors and hydrocephalus, congenital spinal anomalies, vascular malformations, spasticity, and craniofacial disorders in children. Dr. Sandberg is fellow of the American College of Surgeons and the American Academy of Pediatrics and a member of the American Society for Pediatric Neurosurgery. He is a diplomate of the American Board of Neurological Surgery and the American Board of Pediatric Neurological Surgery. He received his undergraduate degree from Harvard University, his medical degree from the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, and completed neurosurgery residency training at Weill Medical College of Cornell University/New York Presbyterian Hospital. Dr. Sandberg was awarded the Resident Traveling Fellowship in Pediatric Neurosurgery by the American Association of Neurological Surgeons (AANS) and the Congress of Neurological Surgeons (CNS), and he completed this fellowship at the Hospital for Sick Children in Toronto, Canada. After residency, he completed fellowship training in pediatric neurosurgery at the Children’s Hospital Los Angeles, which is affiliated with the Keck School of Medicine of the University of Southern California. Dr. Sandberg is editor of the ISPN Guide to Pediatric Neurosurgery, Tumor Section, and is an ad hoc reviewer for a number of neurosurgery and neuroscience journals. He has co-authored textbook chapters and numerous manuscripts in peer-reviewed journals including Neurosurgery, Journal of Neurosurgery: Pediatrics, Journal of Neuro-Oncology, Journal of Child Neurology and Pediatric Neurosurgery.  He is am on the Executive Board of Directors of FIENS (Foundation for International Education in Neurological Surgery), an organization with the mission of training neurosurgeons in developing countries 

David Sandberg chose to become a pediatric neurosurgeon because he is passionate about helping children with debilitating conditions.  He  learned Spanish as an adult during his neurosurgery residency training because of his desire to volunteer on neurosurgical mission trips to developing countries.  He has been various times to Honduras, Peru, and Guatemala (and non-Spanish speaking places such as Haiti and Uganda).  He spends his spare time playing with his children children.

Manish Shah MD

Assistant Professor, Division of Pediatric Neurosurgery

Manish ShahDr. Manish Shah is Assistant Professor of Pediatric Neurosurgery at the University of Texas Medical School at Houston. He received his undergraduate degree in Physics from Princeton University, his medical degree from Vanderbilt University in Nashville, TN, and completed his neurosurgery residency training at Washington University/Barnes-Jewish Hospital in St. Louis, MO. After residency, he completed fellowship training in pediatric neurosurgery at Washington University/St. Louis Children’s Hospital in St. Louis, MO under the tutelage of world-renown pediatric neurosurgeon, Professor Tae Sung Park.  During his neurosurgical training, he completed an NIH T32 sponsored clinical, translational, and basic science research fellowship in Neurological Surgery, Radiology and Functional Neuroimaging under Professor Marcus Raichle. He also had additional training as a Specialist Registrar in Neurological Surgery at Beaumont Hospital in Dublin, Ireland under Professor Ciaran Bolger, an expert in spine surgery.


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UT Physicians

Soham Roy MD, FACS, FAAP

Soham RoySoham Roy, MD, serves as our Director of Pediatric Otolaryngology. Dr. Roy received his undergraduate degree with highest distinction from Stanford University, received a full scholarship for medical education at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis, then completed his residency in otolaryngology at the University of Miami. He completed a fellowship in pediatric otolaryngology at the Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh in 2002 prior to joining the faculty at the University of Miami, where he was named Professor of the Year in 2003. Dr. Roy is board certified by the American Board of Otolaryngology-Head and Neck Surgery and is a fellow of the American Academy of Otolaryngology-Head and Neck Surgery, the American College of Surgeons and the American Academy of Pediatrics. He is a member of the American Society of Pediatric Otolaryngology and the Society for Ear, Nose and Throat Advancements in Children. An internationally recognized speaker and author, Dr. Roy has given hundreds of lectures and published numerous scientific articles, book chapters and national research presentations. He serves on specialty committees and is an annual course instructor at the meeting of the American Academy of Otolaryngology-Head and Neck Surgery. He has received multiple awards for teaching, clinical care and original scientific research, and most recently received the Honor Award from the AAO in 2008 for his contributions in research and teaching. He is a recognized expert in operating room safety issues and serves as a consultant in the development of innovative and safer surgical devices.

Dr. Roy played the violin as a child growing up in California.  He now plays in a band that plays most weekends here in town. He enjoys rock climbing and kayaking in addition to other athletic pursuits.  In his own words, “I’m a d*** fine cook”.  He lives with his semi-crazy german shepherd mix, Avery.

Sancak Yuksel MD

Assistant Professor

profile-sancak-yukselSancak Yuksel, MD, is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Otorhinolaryngology. He obtained his Medical Degree at the Hacettepe University School of Medicine in Ankara, Turkey. He completed his Otorhinolaryngology residency at the Istanbul University Cerrahpasa School of Medicine in Istanbul, Turkey. After residency, he also obtained an advanced training in Head-Neck and Skull Base Surgery as a fellow in the same department. He served as a research fellow in the Basic Science Laboratory of the Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh and worked in numerous NIH-funded projects focused on the middle ear and the eustachian tube pathophysiology. He completed a two-year clinical fellowship in the Department of Pediatric Otolaryngology at Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh. He also served as an instructor at the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine. Dr. Yuksel is a member of American Academy of Otolaryngology–Head and Neck Surgery. His clinical interests include pediatric ear diseases, cochlear implantation, newborn and pediatric swallowing and airway problems, and congenital head and neck lesions.

Gisela Velasquez DDS, MS

Assistant Professor, Department of Pediatric Dentistry

 giselaGisela Velasquez, DDS,MS is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Pediatric Dentistry at the UT, Houston School of Dentistry.  Dr. Velasquez completed her pediatric dental training as well as her  Master in Science from Tufts University School of Dental Medicine, Pediatric Dentistry certificate from Universidad de Chile and her DDS from Universidad Autonoma de Honduras. Aside from teaching the specialty to the dental students and residents she practices at the UT Dentists pediatric dental faculty at the Houston Medical Center. She is also a member of the AAPD, IADT and HAPD and a member  of the Cleft and Craniofacial team where she is involved with pre-surgical molding of infants with cleft lip and palate. Her main interest is the prevention of dental trauma in children.

Irene Leanne Doringo MSN, RN

Team Coordinator

Leanne Doringo, RN, MSNLeanne is the Clinical Coordinator for the University of Texas Craniofacial and Cleft Team. She earned her Bachelor’s in Nursing degree from the University of Texas Medical Branch in Galveston, TX, as well as a Master’s Degree in Nursing Leadership.  Prior to joining the team, she worked at the University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center as a Radiology nurse and gained experience in Neurosurgery and Rehabilitation.  Her career experience has expanded within the world renowned Texas Medical Center.

Aside from work, she cherishes family time.  Leanne has two small children who love to sing and dance.  She has interests in scrapbooking, cooking, outdoor activities, traveling, and of course…shopping!  Her love for children and big smiles are what makes her career rewarding.

Kim-Loan Luu MA, CCC/SLP

Speech Language Pathology

Kim-Loan Luu, Speech-Language PathologistKim-Loan Luu, M.A., CCC/SLP serves as the primary speech-language pathologist for Children’s Memorial Hermann Hospital.  Areas of professional interest include resonance disorders, articulation disorders, and dysphagia.  Her interest in the area of facial clefts is a very personal one.  She is the eldest of four, as well as the only one in her family born with a unilateral complete cleft of the lip and palate.  She is a native Houstonian who enjoys spending time with her family, playing the piano, singing, and volunteering for her church.  Most recently, she is married and now has a son.



Jacqueline Hecht BS, MS, PHD

Medical Genetics

jacqueline-hechtJacqueline Hecht, BS, MS, PhD, is Board Certified in Medical Genetics and in Genetic Counseling.  She obtained her B. S. Degree from NYU and a Masters in Human Genetics and Genetics Counseling from University of Colorado Medical Center.  Dr. Hecht earned her Ph.D. in Epidemiology from U.T. School of Public Health.  She is currently the Associate Dean for Research at the U.T. School of Dentistry, Director, Pediatric Research Center and Professor of Pediatrics at the U.T. Medical and Dental Schools. The research has been published in many journals books including the Nature Genetics Am Journal Pathology, Am Journal of Human Genetics, Clinical Genetics, Genome Research and Matrix Biology.  Her many awards include U.T. Outstanding Faculty Award, U.T. Dean’s Excellence Awards, Barbara Bowman Distinguished Texas Geneticist Award and UT Regents Award.  Her research focuses on identifying the genetic variants contributing to nonsyndromic cleft lip and palate.  The goal is to identify the unique genetic signatures for each family to provide accurate genetic risk assessment.


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Joanne Nguyen MD

Pediatrics and Clinical Genetics

joanne-nguyenJoanne Nguyen, MD, is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Pediatrics, Division of Medical Genetics.  She obtained her Medical Degree at the University of California at Los Angeles and continued at UCLA where she completed a Pediatrics and Medical Genetics internship and residency.  During her training, she was involved in an NIH project studying the genetics of craniofacial anomalies.  She has had several publications and presentations at national meetings.  She is dually board certified in both Pediatrics and Medical Genetics.  In Houston, she has served as faculty at the University of Texas Health Science Center and Baylor College of Medicine.  She is invested in training future pediatricians, geneticists, and genetic counselors.  She is a Fellow of the American Academy of Pediatrics and actively involved in the AAP Section on Genetics and Birth Defects.  She is also a Fellow of the American College of Medical Genetics, as well as a member of the American Society of Human Genetics.  Currently, she is the Director of the Medical Genetics course for the UT Houston Medical School and part of the Association of Professors of Human and Medical Genetics.

Joanne Nguyen is most interested in improving the lives of families affected by birth defects and genetic conditions.  She loves to travel with her husband and spend time with their children.


Email 832.325.7111


UT Physicians

Alix D’Angelo MGC, CGC

Board Certified Genetic Counselor

dangeloAlix D’Angelo, MGC, CGC is a Board Certified Genetic Counselor. She earned her B.S. in Genetics from the University of Georgia and her Masters in Genetic Counseling from the University of Maryland, Baltimore. She is currently an Instructor at the UT Houston School of Dentistry, where she is assisting in the development of a genetics curriculum for dental students and residents. She also serves as an instructor and supervisor for the UT Genetic Counseling Program students, and provides genetic counseling as a member of the UT Cleft and Craniofacial team. This involves evaluating family histories, assessing the recurrence risk for patients and their families, and counseling on prevention, management, inheritance and genetic testing for craniofacial anomalies.