Prolonged use of foot abduction brace reduces the rate of surgery in Ponseti-treated idiopathic club feet

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Abstract

? 2015, The Author(s).Purpose: There is conflicting evidence related to factors affecting the rates of recurrence of idiopathic club feet using the Ponseti method. We attempt to evaluate the predictors of success and failure in our physiotherapy-led Ponseti club foot clinic. Methods: We evaluated 189 children with 279 club feet with a mean follow-up of 6.3?years for the following: Pirani score at presentation, number of casts for correction, indication for Achilles tenotomy, and the duration of foot abduction brace (FAB) use, in relation to outcome. Outcome measures were the need for additional surgery and functional scores. Based on the pattern and rate of ossification of the tarsal bones in idiopathic club foot, a much longer FAB weaning protocol was designed and practiced since 2000. The objective of this study was to answer the question of whether a prolonged period of FAB use reduces the need for surgery in Ponseti-treated idiopathic club foot. Results: Thirty-six feet (12.9?%) underwent additional surgery. The Pirani score and the number of cast changes had no influence on the rate of surgery. The duration of FAB use had a significant effect on the outcome, i.e., the rate of surgery and functional scoring. Operated children used the FAB for 28?months versus 33?months in the non-operated group (p?<?0.05). Only a minor delay in the attainment of walking age was noted (average 15?months). Conclusions: The duration of FAB treatment was found to be the most influential on the functional results and on rate of surgery. Close follow-up and longer FAB weaning program reduced the rates of recurrence.

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Shabtai, L., Segev, E., Yavor, A., Wientroub, S., & Hemo, Y. (2015). Prolonged use of foot abduction brace reduces the rate of surgery in Ponseti-treated idiopathic club feet. Journal of Children’s Orthopaedics, 9(3), 177–182. https://doi.org/10.1007/s11832-015-0663-y

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