Having a baby is an exciting time. Even though a new baby keeps parents very busy, few events are as momentous as bringing home a bundle of joy. Having a child can be a nerve-wracking time, too, since so much care is involved in raising a healthy child. All of that can be even more complicated if your baby has a problem like clubfoot. Even though a foot deformity like this can be upsetting, parents need to know they have a couple of different treatment options for clubfoot, and conservative management is possible.
Treatment for the deformity has a high rate of success if you stick with the whole course of therapy. There are two main approaches to the condition: stretching and casting, or surgical repair. Many people don’t want to put their child through surgery unless it’s absolutely necessary, so they take the conservative approach of stretching and casting the affected foot.
This involves gently manipulating the baby’s flexible feet into a more correct position, then casting them in place so the super-short tendons stay stretched. Every week, the cast is removed and the whole process is repeated, gradually lengthening the connectors over a period of several months.
Once the feet are in a normal position, the casts are removed and your baby begins wearing special braces on the feet. For several months, your child wears these almost constantly. After that, your baby only wears the braces when sleeping. This process lasts for several years, until the feet have completely grown into the correct position without regressing.
Surgery is usually necessary if your child’s feet are rigid or don’t respond to conservative treatments. Both of these methods require a lot of time and investment, but they are necessary if your child is to walk normally. Having a baby with clubfoot is a challenge, but it’s not a disaster. Help is available. Contact Dr. Darren Silvester at Next Step Foot & Ankle Clinic in Pleasanton, TX, for more information or an appointment to discuss your treatment options for clubfoot. You can call (830) 569-3338 or submit an online request to reach us.