Club Foot

Deformation of the foot like foot facing at the sideward direction or towards upward direction is termed as Club-foot. It happens at the time of birth. Even though it is not that much painful during infancy this could disrupt normal walking as the child grows. But there are variety of non-surgical treatments are available that could restore the childs feet to normalcy.
The leg muscles are connected to the bones in the leg by tendons. If these tendons become short or tight there will be a pressure to the leg that would turn the feet inward or outward. This condition could be detected during pregnancy stage itself by ultra sound tests. Boys have more chance of getting club foot than girls.

Types of Club-foot:

  • The most common but also easily treatable form of club foot is called as isolated club foot (idiopathic) which occurs independently and is not associated with any other complications with other parts in the leg.
  • If the club-foot is associated with other medical conditions like disorders in neuromuscular conditions like arthrogryposis or spina bifida, then it is called as non-isolated club-foot. This is a much serious condition that would take much time for getting cured and in some cases even surgeries will be required.

Non-Surgical Treatment:

  • A method called as Ponseti which involves stretching of the affected feet and casting for a certain period of time. In this case the improvements would be prominent in a period of 8 weeks.
  • The heel has a chord called Achilles tendon which might obstruct natural healing of the club foot. This will be cut very minutely that later cure on its own accord. Then the cast could be applied and the regular treatment could be continued. This treatment process is called Achilles tenotomy.
  • The child may have to wear a bracing for a period of 3 months and in some extreme case 3 years to prevent recurrence of the condition.

Surgical treatment:

Even though most of the club foot cases could be cured by non-surgical treatment, some severe cases where the deformity is excess surgical treatment is opted for.

  • Less extensive surgery aims at releasing the Achilles tendon which is medically called as anterior tibial tendon transfer.
  • Releasing of soft tissues in an extensive manner is called major reconstructive surgery.