Clubfoot is a congenital foot deformity affecting the shape or position of one or both feet. It is also known as talipes or congenital talipes equinovarus (CTEV).
Clubfoot is a foot deformity in which the foot is twisted inward with the toes pointing down. The affected foot resembles the end of a golf stick (hence its name).
30-50% of the cases of club foot are bilateral, that is, both feet are affected. About one child in 1000 is born with clubfoot, and twice as many boys have it as girls. Family history is also a positive risk factor.
Clubfoot is the most common disorder of the legs that children are born with. It can be easily identified before birth using an ultrasound scan at 20 weeks of gestation. The deformity can range from mild and flexible deformity to severe and rigid deformity.
Clubfoot is not a painful condition. However, if it is not treated, it will lead to significant discomfort and disability by the teenage years.
Usually conservative treatment along with physiotherapy is effective to correct club foot with mild and flexible deformity. In severe and rigid deformity, conservative treatment may fail and surgery is required.
Some defects may not be totally correctable, but with treatment the appearance and function of the foot can be improved. The treatment may be less successful if the clubfoot is associated with other birth disorders.