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Clubfoot

  • What is Clubfoot?

    Clubfoot is a condition in which the forefoot (part of the foot connected to the lower leg bone) is abnormally twisted and points inward and downward. This may happen with one or both feet. Medically, the condition is called congenital talipes equinovarus (CTEV).

    There are 2 types of clubfoot:

    • Postural clubfoot, which involves muscle imbalance or tightness but there is usually no bone or joint involvement
    • Structural clubfoot, which involves the bone and joints of the foot, where the child's foot cannot perform the full range of movements
  • There are 2 causes of clubfoot:

    • Family history (genetics) and intra-uterine positioning
    • More severe cases can be due to a problem with the spinal cord
  • The condition is often obvious after the birth of your child, as one or both feet may be turned inwards. The calf muscle and the affected foot may be slightly smaller than normal. The foot may not have the full range of movement.

  • Treatment includes:

    • A small cut to release the tight heel cord may be needed
    • Bracing will be required for up to 3 years
    • Manipulation of the feet and cast application to achieve gradual correction
    • Tendon transfer at the foot may be needed in cases of recurrence in an older child
  • Patients with untreated clubfoot may develop an abnormal walking pattern and foot pain due to the incorrect foot position.

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