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What is clubfoot (talipes):
Clubfoot is a deformity of the whole foot that is present at birth. There are several types of clubfoot that are jointly known as 'talipes', as the deformity is mostly in the talus (a bone in the ankle). The most common of the talipes is what is known as "talipes equino varus" - it is so common that the word clubfoot is commonly used to refer to this. In talipes equino varus, the child is born with the foot pointing down and twisted inwards at the ankle.
The foot tends to be smaller than normal. Some children with clubfoot have stiffer joints in the foot and the calf muscles are usually smaller.

Clubfoot occurs in about 1 in 1000 births. Both males and females are equally affected. In half of the cases, both feet are usually affected.

Clubfoot must be treated, it does not correct itself.

Clubfoot causes:
There are two types of clubfoot.

The more severe type is usually associated with other abnormalities or problems such as spinal dysraphism, tethered cord, arthrogyrposis, etc
The second type of clubfoot is less severe and is often called "idiopathic" as the cause is not known. The clubfoot appearance at birth does resemble the position the foot is in during early fetal development, so it is assumed that some unknown cause halts the normal change of foot position during fetal growth.

What does clubfoot look like (talipes):
Clubfoot is usually noticed by the doctor at birth. The foot is turning inwards at the ankle and points down. The achilles tendon is tight. The front half of the foot is turned inward, giving the foot a kidney bean shape. If not corrected in infancy or if missed (not likely), the infant will walk on the outside of the foot and not be able to get the bottom of the foot flat on the ground. There maybe a decrease in size of the calf muscles and the affected foot may be smaller than the unaffected side.

What is the treatment for clubfoot (talipes):
All cases of clubfoot need treating - the earlier the better. Less severe and more flexible types are casted - the more severe and rigid types need surgery.

A series of plaster or fibreglass casts are applied to the foot and lower limb - these are replaced every few weeks, which each cast progressively moving the foot towards a more corrected position. The number of times the cast needs to be replaced will be determined by the severity of the clubfoot (but several months is not unusual). Most activities are not hampered by wearing a cast.

If cast treatment fails or the clubfoot is rigid, surgery may be needed. This is not usually done until the child is between four and eight months of age.

There are a variety of surgical procedures which may be done in isolation or in combination:

Soft tissue surgery that releases the tight tissues around the joints and results in lengthening of tendons so the foot can assume a more corrected position
Bony procedures such as "breaking bone" and resetting the bone to correct deformities, or fusing joints together to stabilize joints to enable the bones to grow solidly together.
Tendon transfers to move the tendons to a different position, so they can move the foot into a corrected position.
[Edited on 29/07/2008]

Forever in our hearts....

hi all,

my name is stacey i am 20yrs old and my DH is 25 we have two DS's and another on the way.

we have been told that DS3 has club feet(talipes), both of his feet are affected.

Just wondering if anyone else has been through this.

Forever in our hearts....

Hi Stacey,
I have just stumbled across your post. My DS2 was born with Right foot talipes. He is now 17mths old and his foot is now considered the same as a normal foot. Which method are they using to correct his feet?

They are doing the Ponsetti method

Forever in our hearts....

that is what they are doing with my son. He had plasters till 9 weeks old. Cut his Achilles at 6 weeks. He now wears a brace when he sleeps. he will wear this until he is about 3 or 4yrs old.

He started walking about a week ago but his ankles look very wobbly and they are very flexible they twist around very easily.

Good luck with everything.
PM me if you have any questions about anything if you like.


Hi and welcome to this thread.

We have been told that Kobi wont need the tendon release and after only 6 casts he will be in boots on monday. they said he will need them on 23hrs a day for 3mths then only 12hrs(night time) a day, so yeah for sleeping lol.

How old is your DS?

Kobi started his casts on day 5 of his life. and he is now 5wks old.

Forever in our hearts....

My DS is 17mths, We saw the Orthopedic surgeon today and he is very happy with his foot, we don't have to see him for another 6mths.

Declan still wears the boots when he sleeps. and they say that he will need them until he is about 4yrs old.

That is good news about kobi's casts. Declan had them on for 9 weeks.

yeah the doc's told us maybe 7 so we were like WT when they told us they are measurng him up for boots.

Im so happy tho,

Forever in our hearts....

Were you worried when you first found out about the condition?

I was, but now I look back on it and think things could be much worse. When you look at Declan now people cant tell which foot was affected. Only that he has very small feet for his age (size 4) his brother feet were a size 7 at the same age. Declan does have one foot slightly smaller than the other and one leg is slightly shorter as well.

Yeah i was, but i was told bubs could have downs and a few other things as clu feet wasnt his only problem.

Kobi has both feet affected so at the moment they both look similair. They have checked the length of his feet and everything and they are the ame at the moment.

Forever in our hearts....

Just an update:

Kobi is doing great he is still in the boots and bar but had to get them changed as he has grown so much in 4wks(Thank Goodness)! When we hit the next doctor's appointment it'll be 2mths that he'll be in them for 23hrs a day.

Our Doctor said that if he keeps going the way he's going then he will be out of them at our next appointment and will only be in them at nite time.

What a really nice christmas present that would be.

Thanks everyone.

Forever in our hearts....

Hi to all that read this,

Just letting you's know that Kobi is now in the boots at night time only and he is doing great. We go to get new boots and bar in 1 mnth and back to the hospital in 3 months. YAY KOBI!!!! what a chrissie pressie

Forever in our hearts....

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