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Children’s clubfoot: treatment and prevention

Children's clubfoot: treatment and prevention

The clubfoot is characterized by the development of support defects, which is shifted to the outside. This is clearly seen in the gait – the foot bulges more towards the edge.

If you determine the cause in time, then it will be much easier to get rid of problems, as well as to prevent their occurrence in the future.

According to statistics, every third child suffers from clubfoot. Her medical name is the varus deformity of the lower limbs.

It is more common in boys than in girls, and is bilateral in 50% of cases. Pathology of the development of the musculoskeletal system is expressed in the deformity of the foot, which limits its mobility.

Varus deformity of the lower extremities is a diagnosis that is often made to young children. This is not only an aesthetic defect, but also a possible evidence of adverse processes in the body of a baby.

The baby’s clubfoot can be suspected even in the intrauterine development. An experienced ultrasound doctor will definitely pay attention to some characteristic signs of this disease in the fetus as early as the 16th week of pregnancy.

The neonatologist can also confirm the diagnosis at birth.

Why does congenital clubfoot occur? Doctors identify several possible causes: genetic problems – we are talking about serious diseases (for example, Edwards syndrome, which are characterized by numerous pathologies); mechanical effects – congenital clubfoot may develop when the uterus is pressed, exerting pressure on the fetus, which occurs against the background of lack of water or improper location of the fetus in the uterus; various pathologies in the development of the fetus – avitaminosis in the mother, disorders in the development of the muscular-ligamentous apparatus of the fetus.

Visible violations of foot setting begin to appear in a child in 2–3 years. Pay attention: the signs of acquired clubfoot are especially noticeable in children during sleep, when their muscles are relaxed.

The development of acquired clubfoot in children may be associated with the appearance of flaccid and spastic paralysis, which indicates violations of the nervous system; to be the result of various injuries of the feet, burns of the feet, complications after fractures in which the bones of the foot or lower leg grow together incorrectly, polio, and the wearing of incorrectly chosen shoes.

The acquired type of clubfoot develops against the background of an increase in the load on the child’s feet – the bones grow quickly, change their shape, but the muscle tissues and ligaments simply do not keep up with such growth. As a result, some muscles are constantly in good shape, and some are always relaxed, which leads to the deformation of the foot.

It is rather easy to diagnose a clubfoot at children’s age – this is done either by an ultrasound doctor during examination of a pregnant woman, or by a neonatologist in a maternity hospital, or by a pediatrician. But whenever a diagnosis is made, one must adhere to the basic principles of successful treatment of the anomaly: the beginning of treatment should be timely.

At the first symptoms of leg deformity in a child, you should immediately consult a doctor. The pediatrician will prescribe a referral to an orthopedist, who, in turn, will conduct a visual inspection, and also prescribe an x-ray to accurately diagnose the disease. The child must be constantly monitored by an orthopedic surgeon.

Parents need patience – treatment will be long. If you start it in the early stages – the chances for a full recovery are very high.

Children's clubfoot: treatment and prevention

The baby’s foot is a treatment for congenital clubfoot fixed with a plaster cast that changes every week. After the final removal of the plaster and straightening of the foot, the child needs to wear a specially selected longuet for the night – this will consolidate the result and prevent the development of relapses.

After the main course of treatment, children are recommended to wear orthopedic shoes. Please note: the method of treatment of congenital clubfoot is always chosen by the orthopedic surgeon, taking into account the severity of the anomaly, the general health of the baby, the age of the child, the individual characteristics of the organism.

The doctor must find out the reason for the development of this pathology in the child and only after that select the treatment. As a rule, the essence of therapy is reduced to joint fixation, physical therapy, massage, physiotherapy, taking vitamin D, as well as wearing properly selected or special orthopedic shoes and regular walks, which will help prevent relapse and further development of the disease. Physical therapy includes a series of exercises aimed at strengthening the legs.

It is very important to do exercise therapy regularly.

In this pathology, a therapeutic massage with a course of 10 treatments 3-4 times a year is very effective. With the right actions of the masseur, he quickly gives results: removes muscle tone, strengthens the joints and bone system of the baby, has a positive effect on his overall physical development and nervous system.

Doctors recommend older children to actively engage in sports – swimming, dancing and other types of physical activity.

Children's clubfoot: treatment and prevention

As you know, any disease is better to prevent than to cure – this also applies to clubfoot. During pregnancy, a woman should lead a healthy lifestyle, eat fully, comply with the daily regimen.

Then the child and his mother (if she is breastfeeding him) should eat right. A varied healthy diet with a high content of protein and trace elements: calcium and phosphorus, as well as the correct daily routine with enough time to sleep.

Capture the child with exercise, in a playful way. If the baby has just begun to walk, then long walks are contraindicated for him – take a stroller or bicycle with you.

If the crumbs have excess weight, then an urgent need to contact a pediatrician and a nutritionist to restore the normal physical condition of the child. Swimming is considered the best prevention of diseases of the musculoskeletal system, including clubfoot.

It is useful for children to walk barefoot on grass, pebbles and sand, and also walk up and down stairs. Kids need to wear only high-quality shoes with a rigid back and a good arch support.

Even a slight degree of clubfoot can lead to undesirable consequences. Therefore, when the first signs of foot deformity appear, you need to contact an orthopedist for professional medical help – this will help to quickly solve the problem and avoid complications.

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