Introduction

  • 1 in every 1000 babies is born with a twisted foot or a club foot
  • The toes may be bent at an angle or the foot is curled sideways
  • Additionally, the foot seems to be pointing in the wrong direction and appears crooked
  • In other ways, the baby remains healthy
  • Furthermore, if a club foot is not treated immediately, it may cause mobility issues in the child as he/she grows

What is clubfoot?

  • When bands of tissue or tendons and muscles in the foot are shorter than usual, it results in clubfoot
  • Unfortunately, there are no known causes of club foot and therefore, preventive measures cannot be implemented
  • However, some causes can be outlined as under:
  • According to studies, 2/3rd of the babies born with clubfoot are male
  • Babies with a family history of the anomaly
  • Lifestyle choices during pregnancy – for instance, smoking, usage of drugs, etc.
  • Spina bifida – a birth defect that can lead to clubfoot
  • Lack of amniotic fluid during gestation – the fluid that surrounds the baby

Signs

  • It is extremely easy to diagnose clubfoot:
  • Toes are curled inward
  • Foot points downward
  • Also, the foot may be upside down or appears to be sideways
  • Calf muscles are underdeveloped
  • Likewise, the foot is smaller by at least ½ an inch as against the normal foot
  • Finally, the foot has a limited range of motion
  • A late ultrasound during pregnancy may also be used to diagnose the presence of clubfoot

Treatment

  • Specialist surgeons attempt to rectify the baby’s clubfoot almost immediately after its birth
  • The idea is to fix the foot before the child can learn to walk

Casting

  • Since the child’s tendons are supple and can bend easily, the baby’s foot is gently stretched into a new position
  • x-rays may be obtained to ascertain whether the bones are actually moving into the right position
  • Furthermore, a special brace or shoe may be recommended to gradually rectify it

Surgery

  • When no amount of stretching works, then surgery may be inevitable
  • This, if the baby’s tendons are too short to stretch
  • After the clubfoot surgery, gradual casting used to fix the foot
  • Furthermore, the doctors attempt to fix the foot within six months to a year

Call Orthopaedics India’s 24 x 7 number for more information – +918101555555

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