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November 2018

Question:

My son who is 7 months old is suffering from soft tissue swelling on the dorsum of the foot from birth. This condition is present on both of his feet. This condition is also known as clubfoot if I am correct. Now I would like to know if treatment is possible for this condition. If so does he have to undergo any surgery, or can the condition be treated without any kind of surgery? If surgery is needed what will be the total cost including hospital fee and at what age can he undergo it?

- Lisha - Bangladesh (Parent)

 

Answer:

Soft tissue swelling in the dorsum of the foot is not necessarily clubfoot. Clubfoot appearance if present is characteristic. There is a good description and photo of it here. If you suspect that your infant has clubfoot, it is best treated when it is first diagnosed. We often start day old newborns with weekly casting, which is the Ponseti treatment mentioned in the above link. If treated properly with casting at a young age, you can oftentimes you can avoid surgery. As for the cost, that best I can tell you is that it is done on an outpatient basis. It would require somewhere around 6 weekly casts. I would check with your local pediatric orthopaedist.

- R. Jay Lee, MD



 

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