Clubfoot: current concept of treatment

Andreacchio A., Alberghina F., Monforte S., Dimeglio A., Canavese F.


Idiopathic clubfoot (IC), also referred to as congenital talipes equinovarus, is one of the most common lower limb deformities observed in newborns, leading to significant functional impairment when left untreated. Early minimally invasive treatment has been praised as one of the most successful practice of modern pediatric orthopedics. This review aims to report current knowledge and controversies about clubfoot treatment.
Material and methods
We describe the main trends in clubfoot managing, identifying peculiarities, difficulties and prognostic factors related to the treatment.
Many treatment techniques either conservative, surgical or hybrid have been used over the past decades. Based on good and excellent results during long-term follow-up, Ponseti method has been globally accepted by paediatric orthopaedic surgeons as standard method of treatment. However, some other conservative methods are still widely applied in the clinical setting, such as the French Physical Therapy method. Adherence to the bracing protocol is critical for the long-term success of the treatment, being a better predictor for relapse than severity of the deformity at birth.
Taking care of the manipulation and casting details by trained professionals, together with enhancing the child and patents’ adherence to the brace, are essential for the success of conservative treatment. Surgery should be performed only when strictly needed, preferably on a “a la carte” approach.


clubfoot, Ponseti, casting, French functional physiotherapy, hybrid method

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