WEDNESDAY, Feb. 9, 2022 (HealthDay News) — The Ponseti method is the most effective and accepted treatment for idiopathic congenital clubfoot, and every infant born with clubfoot should have access to it, according to a clinical report published online Jan. 31 in Pediatrics.

Robert Cady, M.D., from Upstate Medical University in Syracuse, New York, and colleagues address the diagnosis and treatment of idiopathic congenital clubfoot to enable practitioners to care for their patients and their families.

The authors note that the Ponseti method, which comprises serial casting, Achilles tenotomy, and bracing the clubfoot, has become the most effective and accepted treatment, which has a goal of a deformity-free, functional, comfortable foot. The treatment is particularly successful when the Ponseti-trained practitioner, primary care clinician, and family work together. Parental understanding of the bracing phase is an important factor in the ultimate success of the Ponseti method. When bracing is not done properly or is stopped prematurely, the rate of recurrent deformity is very high. Positive education and support for parents are important for completion of the entire treatment protocol. In most countries around the world, including those with limited resources, Ponseti clubfoot programs have been launched. The ultimate goal is for every infant born with clubfoot to have access to the Ponseti method of care.

“The importance of parents adhering to the entire bracing program cannot be overstated,” the authors write. “A positive communication style between the parents and the pediatrician can improve brace adherence and treatment success.”

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