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Advice about Club Foot
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Advice about Club Foot
I am expecting a baby soon who has been diagnosed with a club
foot. Any advice on best treatment, doctors, impact on other
children, books or journal articles, advice, etc.? Thanks.
Berkeley mom trying to stay calm
My husband was born with a club foot. We know very little about
his treatment, except that he was in casts as an infant, because
he was adopted after a lot of his treatment had happened. I am
sure treatment has improved, anyway, since he is now 44. His
ankle is still stiff, but it hasn't held him back much. He has
been an athlete all his life and usually does 4 or 5 triathlons a
year now. He bike commutes to work, and has run several
marathons. During graduate school, ice hockey was his favorite
sport. I hope that you can relax and look forward to the birth of
your wonderful baby.
I don't have specific advice, but my husband was born with club
feet, as were all of his siblings. He and one of his brothers
required surgery to correct it -- he was about 4 years old at the
time. I think his other siblings just had to wear braces at
bedtime for a number of years, and maybe special shoes. This was
in the late 60s, early 70s so the treatments may be different
now. Anyway, they are all fine and and had ''normal'' childhoods;
no problems or limitations on physical activities at all.
Our 1 year old daughter was born with an orthopedic impairment that
affects both hands/arms. We have been
*very* happy with the occupational and physical therapy she has received
through Children's Hospital in
Oakland. I highly recommend their rehab department, especially Dr. Bob
Haining (physiotherapist), Ginny
Gibson (OT) and Caryn Lesko (PT). There is a lot to learn, but the
staff at CHO are great about ensuring that
you know what to look out for, and why they are or are not doing various
treatments/therapies. Best of luck to
you and your family.
--On the road less traveled
Dr. Scott Hoffinger at Children's Hospital is an orthopedist
with much experience in treating this problem. I work with him,
and recommend him highly.
Please look at http://six-feet.com/clubfoot.html
Your baby will be fine. You just need to make sure that you get
your baby treated by a Ponseti certified doctor. If you can,
it's worth the trip to go to Iowa to be treated by Dr. Ponseti
himself. We took our 3 week old to Iowa to get treated and she
runs, dances, jumps like any toddler now.
Please join the clubfoot support group at
There are many parents of clubfoot babies who can help you out -
it's a treatable birth defect and if treated properly it's really
not a big deal.
mom of totally corrected clubfoot toddler
My husband was born with a club foot. My mother-in-law said he
wore a brace for 6 months, and it was fine. That was 42 years
ago. His foot is still perfectly normal. He plays and coaches
basketball, runs, bikes.
Lots of people were born with club foot, Kirsti Yamaguchi, David
Lynch, Mia Hamm. They overcame the condition and enjoyed long and
successful careers. Maybe your baby will win a Olympic gold metal
Just be sure to pick a good pediatrician and let her/him know
married to ex-club foot
I encourage you to check out the Shriners Hospitals for Children
(http://www.shrinershq.org/Hospitals/Main/). Their Northern
California hospital is in Sacramento. This is from their website:
Shriners Hospitals for Children is a one-of-a-kind health care
system dedicated to improving the lives of children by providing
pediatric specialty care, innovative research and outstanding
teaching programs. Every year, the 22 hospitals provide care for
thousands of kids with orthopaedic conditions, burns, spinal cord
injuries, and cleft lip and palate, in a family-centered
environment at no charge. It's how Shriners Hospitals has been
helping kids defy the odds since 1922.
My dad was a Shriner for 50 years, and I can vouch for the
amazing care they give to kids of all circumstances!
Good luck with your new baby!
Our 17-month old girl was born with right club foot. We
consulted with Dr. Ponseti, who referred us to Dr. Michael
Colburn, who has been trained by Dr. Ponseti. Dr. Colburn works
out of Kaiser offices in Walnut Creek and Pleasanton.
Our daughter had a series of casts on her right foot & leg
starting when she was 10 days old. After her 5th cast, she had a
tenotomy, and her foot was corrected, and wore a footbrace most
of the time. She still wears a footbrace at night, but is
walking all over the place in regular shoes now. I would highly
recommend Dr. Colburn as he has treated many, many cases of
clubfoot. He is a Kaiser doctor, but will treat your baby even
if you don't have Kaiser (we didn't). If you are considering
other doctors, be sure to ''interview'' them ahead of time, and
ask how many clubfoot babies they treat a year, and what their
followup relapse rate is. We did consult with both Dr. Hoffinger
& Dr. Colburn before our baby was born, and felt better about
going with Dr. Colburn because of his experience. I would also
recommend the Ponseti/clubfoot Yahoo groups someone else
mentioned. Good luck!
mom of baby girl right club foot
I just submitted advice about Dr. Colburn (Dr. who treated my
daughter's club foot - still seeing him for followup visits). I
wanted to provide you with a paper for additional reading
Hope it helps!
and the Yahoo groups (you are not alone - people on the site are
mom of baby girl with right club foot
I missed your posting about club foot. My Daughter just had her third
on her right foot at 4 years old. What you will need to have done
depands on the
severity of the club foot. We have been going to Children's hospital
and love it. Our
Doctor is Dr. Hoffenger and he is one of the best in the country. Please
give me a call if
you want to talk about it. I wish I had gotten a little more information
before she was
Can a club foot appear spontaneously? For the past two days, my
8 m.o. daughter's left foot has been turning in towards the
other foot. This seems to be causing her no pain -- it's me who
is worrying! It is not constant, so perhaps this is not a club
foot? Perhaps it's just her learning a new way to move and
enjoying moving her body in a new way? Where I have looked
online all mention club foot as a congenital defect, which I
would assume means NOT out of the blue... any thoughts on this,
or recommendations for websites to check out? So far my plan is
to mention it to the doctor the next time we're in the office...
or is this a priority?
My husband's an MD and he's never heard of a club foot that's not
congenital. I bet,
this too, will pass. If she's not in pain, and it's not constant, I
wouldn't worry about it.
Mom of 3
You may have something more serious going on here, but I did
notice my son's feet turn more in towards each other for a few
months after he started crawling (6 months) but before walking
(15 months). No explanation, and it's now gone. No harm in
mentioning it to your doctor, though.
My sister just had a baby with a club foot. She has been to two different
one recommended surgery, the other successive casts. Has anyone had
this? Can anyone tell me who would be the best doctor or practice to consult?
My daughter did not have a club foot, but, at around 19 months (she'd just
started walking) her feet were turning in and our doctor recommended that
she be seen by an orthopedist. We went for the appointment with Dr.
Donald Townsend (3300 Webster, Oakland, 893-4854). He x-rayed her feet
and showed me how the bones were growing at a distinct angle. He said
that casting would correct this problem and put the casts on that same
day. I was pretty distraught because she couldn't walk anymore. However,
it was only a short while before she was toddling around in the casts and
they did not bother or slow her down at all. (Of course, she sounded like
Frankenstein coming across the floor, but, at least we knew where she was
at all times!)
We went in three times (I think) to have the casts changed. It was not
easy because they had to use a saw to take the casts off, then would put
them back on. My daughter was not very happy about that, but we survived
it. I think she wore them for about 6 months, but she's 8 now, and I
can't quite remember. On the whole, I was VERY glad we did it. Her
post-cast x-rays showed completely straight feet. Dr. Townsend commented
to me when we went in for our last visit, that many insurance companies
were no longer covering this procedure, as they deemed it "cosmetic." I
feel very fortunate that we were able to do it, since my niece suffers
from extreme "pigeon toes" and it does effect her running, so I do not
agree with the insurance company assessment of the procedure.
Good luck to your sister!
My nephew has/had clubfoot, not too severe though. Anyway, they did
sucessive casts and it seems to be working, although at almost one year, he
still has to do the brace. I believe that surgery might have been an
option had the hard cast not worked (it was at least several months of a
hard cast before the brace), but it did. So maybe they try the cast first
and see how it goes. They live in so. cal so i can't give a recommendation
for a doc.
this page was last updated: Sep 1, 2008
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