January 09, 2005

Club feet

Nathan in casts
Nathan was born practically perfect in every way. Except that he has club foot. Or, rather, club feet. Both his feet are turned inward, as if his feet were clapping. It’s an affliction that affects about 1/1000 babies in the US, according to things we’ve read. It’s one of the most common birth defects.

On Friday, Nathan had his first appointment with the pediatric orthopedist at Lucille Packard Children’s Hospital. The doctor said that it looked like his would be a pretty easy case to correct. He’s using the Ponseti treatment to correct the feet. Basically, Nathan will wear casts (groin to toe) on his feet for six weeks (changed every week since he’s growing so quickly), then braces on his feet 24 hours a day for three months, then braces only at night until he’s 3 or 4 years old.

To our surprise, Nathan was able to get his first casts put on in our first visit, so he came home on Friday with his legs all wrapped up. It doesn’t seem to hurt him, but he was very grumpy the first day, probably from frustration over not being able to curl his legs up or stretch them out at all. By yesterday, though, he was mostly back to his normal (very mellow) self.

Posted by Mike at January 9, 2005 06:50 PM

Glad to hear he's adjusting well! He's such a cutie!!!

Posted by: Amity on January 10, 2005 12:51 PM

Aww what a little trooper!

So how visible is the difference between his old natural angles and the new first casts? Is it a barely noticable change, or can you see the difference with the first cast already?

Posted by: beca on January 10, 2005 09:14 PM

The angle of his foot is definitely different with the first cast. The doctor said that the initial cast was just to start correcting in one axis, but I can't now remember which axis that was (and, even if I remembered the word, I probably wouldn't remember what that really meant). His next appointment is Wednesday, so we'll see what happens then.

Posted by: Mike on January 11, 2005 01:14 AM

my son, Max, was born with bilateral club feet in June 2003. He was casted when he was one week old for two weeks. His orthopedist determined that the casts had little to no effect and I opted for surgery. He had his surgery at 10 months of age and wore casts for 12 weeks over the summer. He began walking within 3 weeks of the casts' removal. His feet are beautiful. I would love to hear how Nathan's feet are doing through the casting method

Posted by: Shawn M Jewett on February 9, 2005 06:47 PM

I was born with club feet in the eighties. I'm not sure if Doctors have better ideas for treating this now, but mine was so severe, I had to have surgery at 6 weeks. The doctor's told my parents I wouldn't ever be able to do track or gymnastics, or other sports, and it didn't stop them from signing me up. I've been just as active as most of my friends and my club feet haven't held me back at all. I did have to learn to walk twice, because I learned with my casts on, and I couldn't figure it out when they came off. Don't be discouraged by this at all! I've enjoyed having unique feet! I'm pregnant with my first now, and I'm praying for straight feet, but I'll take what God gives me.

Posted by: Becky on February 28, 2005 06:45 PM

My son was born with club feet. He has been in casts for 12 weeks and we still have a few more weeks to go. I think it hurts the parents more than it does the child! I am glad to hear that your little one is doing well. I definately know what your going through. The problem that we are having now is kicking! My son has some how learned how to kick the cast off, so we have had to put a bar between the two casts. My thoughts are with you and your little guy....

Posted by: Leah on March 10, 2005 12:00 PM

My daughter is five months pregnant and just had a target ultra sound. It showed both feet are club. It's so good to hear positive things. I'm a very optimistic person so I'm sure my grandson will do fine too.

Posted by: Karen on March 21, 2005 02:08 PM

My son was born March 9, 2005 with clubbed feet. He is now on his third set of cast. We went to Shriners Hospital and I can't tell you enough good things about them.

Posted by: Kerri on March 31, 2005 05:15 PM

My son was born with clubbed feet in 1977. They were severe. Casts were put on at 3 days old and he had his tendons lenghtend at 5 months. He had splints 24 hous a day till he was a year. He is now 28 and 2 wks ago his achilles tendon snapped and he needed surgery. The surgeon told me that he has half the tendon we have and there is nit much to work with. His ankles and legs are sooo tiny compared to the upper part of him. When he was 7 a surgeon recommended he separate both bones from knee down and reconstruct half of his feet. We thought how awful. My son is angry that we did not do this which would correct the deformed look of his feet and legs. This recent surgery ha trigered old fears and new. I worry that he will always have problems as the surgeon said, they are not very strong and are weaker since this last surgery.

Posted by: debra smith on April 18, 2005 06:41 PM

I was born with clubbed feet in 1975. I didn't have surgery, but did have casts on as well as corrective shoes. I wore the corrective shoes until I was 3 I think. My right foot seems more affected. The doctor told my mom that I would never be able to engage in sports. I was involved with cheerleading and gymnastics. My mom never even told me this till years later.. actually after high school. I am now 30 yrs. old, and I am having minor problems with my right foot. It gets sore if I don't wear tennis shoes with good support and sometimes after walking a whole lot. I am going to the doctor on Friday just to see if everything is okay. Other than a minor pain, I haven't had any problems. Although I hate the way my right foot looks. My right foot is wider than my left foot. You can tell by looking at it that the bone structure is different than the left and not normal. The last time I went to the doctor for a ganglion and not for foot pain, and the doctor said your right foot is deformed. That was the first time that anyone has ever said that, and I never thought of it as deformed before. But it's been like that my whole life. I'm just thankful to be able to walk and enjoy life.

Posted by: Kim on May 11, 2005 04:53 PM

I was born with club feet.I have had four corrective surgeries and still expereince a lot
of pain, mainly in ankles.I have came a long way
people say they can't even tell by the way i walk
that i was born with this deformity.I'm 20 years old now i enjoy boxing, lifting weights and I put no limits on myself.I'm happy and I thank god every day that he made me the way i am because it could be worse.

Posted by: Josh on May 17, 2005 04:05 PM

I, too, was born with severely clubbed feet in 1954. I was casted immediately and learned to walk with shoes that had a brace between them. I had six major surgeries to correct my feet. In fact, my earliest memories are of being in the hospital for surgery. I had two surgeries when I was three to lengthen my Achilles Tendons, two when I was five to graft ligaments in my ankles, and two when I was twelve that essentially fused all my ankle bones so that I have no lateral mobility and little flexiblity in my feet. Sometimes I have some pain and stiffness, but it has always gone away with time. Perhaps the most obvious physical attribute is that my calves are extraordinarily skinny which for someone who is 6'5" looks a little odd when I'm wearing shorts, but I don't care, and that's what counts.

Nevertheless, I can walk and run! Very few people notice that I walk a little stiffly. I enjoy a very active life. I've played many sports though my life and have been on several championship teams in several sports including a national championship in rowing. I love playing squash and golf, and I just got back from a vacation hiking in the Alps in Switzerland. My children (now 19 and 22) have had no signs of this deformity.

I've had people say that this must have been hard, but I think it's given me greater empathy for other people's problems. If I had to deal with my feet after years of having normal feet, it may have been difficult to overcome. However, this is something that I was born with. It's always been my reality, and I really don't think that it's that big a deal. It's certainly nothing that I'd want someone else to have to go through, but many other people have much greater physical or mental limitations. In many respects it's been a blessing in that I think it has made me a better person.

Posted by: Jeff on July 22, 2005 01:42 PM

I'm glad your baby is doing better I know how it feels. My baby boy was born with a right clubfoot and I was very surprised when I saw it I didn't know what it was. But thanks to Scottish Rigth hospital Junior has a fferfect foot. He wore only3 casts and the ponstti shoes for 2 months and junior is now 11 months and already trying to walk and you cant even tell wich foot was the bad one.

Posted by: karen on September 6, 2005 03:54 PM

My daughter was born with bilateral club feet in December of 2003. The doctors at Children’s Hospital classified her as extremely severe when she was born and we started casting when she was 3 days old. She wore the initial set of casts for 9 weeks then started wearing braces 24 hours/day for 6 months. This past December, they placed her back in casts for 2 weeks due to her right foot starting to turn back in. She now wears her braces at night and is doing remarkably well. She can even manage to take a step or two while wearing the brace! It is truly amazing to see her adjust to the casts and braces and she has never made a fuss about having to wear them. I believe that she just thinks its normal and what we do when we go to bed. The only problem we had was with the braces that our Dr. in Birmingham had us using. They were made of stiff leather shoes with laces and were making blisters on her feet. My wife searched the Internet and found Dr. Ponseti’s office number. She called and left a message with his secretary detailing the problem and was told that someone would get back with her. About 20 minutes later, Dr. Ponseti (not a secretary or nurse as you would expect) called her back and told her of braces that he helped design and are made for the Ponseti method of correction. They look like sandals and use leather buckles instead of laces. They are very easy to put on and are made so you can tell when the foot is in the proper position. He gave us the name and number of the man who makes the shoes (the shoes are custom made for each child using a foot mold) and advised that we give him a call. After talking with my wife, we decided to go to Iowa and see Dr. Ponseti for a second opinion. He is a brilliant man who truly loves what he does. On our first visit he had doctors from Germany and England observing him work. If you need a second opinion or live close enough, I highly recommend seeing Dr. Ponseti. We have a great Dr. in Birmingham, AL but travel to Iowa to see Dr. Ponseti for a second opinion every 5-6 months. Our next trip to Iowa is planned for mid October 2005.

Posted by: Mitchell on September 7, 2005 03:52 PM


My name is Mary Lopez.I have a baby gril that was born with clubbed feet. She is now 10 months old and has only had one surgery so far. I am happy to hear that my family is not alone. I drale confaret from your wed site.Thank You for your babys story. Im vary happy that he to is doing good.

Posted by: maryellen on September 24, 2005 05:32 PM

Hi there, am so glad I found this website.Okay here I go. My son Jacob was born with bilateral clubbed feet. He is 15 months now. He was casted at 1 week old and of coarse "The" shoes were on at about 6 months. No sign of needing surgery...YET.. I hope. He wears the shoes at nigth. During the day we give him some time; crawl,stand and walk. What makes us nervous is that his right foot is alittle more inward than his left. He tries so hard to walk! He'll take a step then he sits :) We've been blessed with Jacob. We are told his case is not severe and that he will be fine. But of coarse as a new mom,I worry. Overall, it's a scary feeling to think of his outcome. I just wanted to give everyone some hope. Things will be okay and only time will tell; recovery. I will keep every child, parent and family in my prayers. Every child that comes into this world is special, but our babies are supernaturaly heavenly!! Now, I HAVE A QUESTION!!? For the parents who have a child wearing the ortho's...Jacob will always find a way to get his feet out. Anyone have any tips or advice? Please let me know. YOur input will lbe greatly appreciated. THanks again I hope to hear from you all soon. Good luck :)

Posted by: Janet Garcia on November 16, 2005 03:27 PM

My baby boy is ten months old. He was also corrected with the Ponsetti method at Shriners. They were so caring and did great. But my mother is concerned about him having to wear the Dennis Brown Bar at night untill he is three. Is this really necessary?

Posted by: michele rios on December 18, 2005 05:03 PM

my sister is about to hae a daughter and be might be born with club foot how does a child get it and what should we expect because i want to be prepared for this im scared and sad at the same time she'll be here in june

Posted by: iesha on January 13, 2006 02:21 PM

I'm 24 weeks pregnant with twins and our ultrasound this week indicated that one of the babies has club feet. They're having us come back next week for a detailed ultrasound of that twin to see if they find any other problems so I'm feeling a little anxious. We're hoping they're wrong and that it was more related to the baby's position at the time but I guess we'll have to wait and see. Has anyone else had this diagnosed or indicated through an ultrasound?

We did find out that my sister-in-law had a "mild" case of it when she was an infant. She was casted for about 8 weeks around 8 months old and had some follow-up but recovered fine and went on to be active with both track and basketball. I'm trying to find comfort in her recovery but it's still scary and I know every child and every case is different...

Posted by: Dana on January 19, 2006 10:24 AM

Our doctor said that they don't really know what causes club feet. Sometimes it's hereditary, but a lot of the time, it's just random.

I think that sometimes they catch it in an ultrasound, but sometimes not. Definitely with Nathan, none of the ultrasounds that his birthmother had caught it, even though both of his feet were affected.

Posted by: Mike on January 25, 2006 09:52 PM

my names holly and i have a 21 month old daughter born may 04 with severe club feet. 18 weeks into my pregancy club feet was seen. Casting at 1 week old surgery at 6 weeks old to lengthen achilles tendon cast left on for 4 weeks , lether shoes with bar between (dennis brown bar) she hated was told she had to wear it for 23 hours a day, up until this point she had been sleeping threw the night and now would not sleep at all rub blister and was put back in cast which were fiber glass and were really light until her eight month. Was given night splints. Walk at 11 months right foot is worst than left and may need surgery. Wears special correcting shoes. Its just a wait and see what the outcome will be. For janet Garcia the shoes maybe to tight thats what i found with my duaghter she would try get them off if her foot was to tight in there. Just an idea!!

Posted by: Holly on February 8, 2006 08:38 PM

You know it's funny that I had never heard of club feet until my 17 wk ultra sound. I am currently 32 wks pregant with our first child. Both me and my husband cried for days, it was so hard to find out that something is wrong with our unborn child. The baby has bilateral club feet, and we will be meeting with a orthopedic sergeon before that baby arrives. I am so glad to read that there are so many successful outcomes. When I was researching club feet on the net, I read that it could be an indication of Downs Syndrom. Does anyone know how common this is? I did not have an amnio, but now I wish I did just to know one way or the other.

Posted by: Stephanie on February 23, 2006 12:32 PM

I am 20 weeks pregnant with my third child. Yesturday the ultra-sound showed 2 clubed feet on my boy. Really, worried that it was something
I did or didn't do. My first 2 were perfect.
But reading here is comforting.
Thank, you.

Posted by: jennifer on April 5, 2006 08:34 AM

My son was born with clubbed feet, he had cast on when he was a month old, had surgery when he was 5 months and now he has to were the shoes and brace. I was only 19 when I had him and it was hard so my thoughts are with you.

Posted by: Courtney Wilson on April 26, 2006 06:21 PM

My daughter was born with club feet on january 30 2006. she had her first cast on the third day she was born. she is now three and a half and still on cast. I'm worried for her because we are doing the posenti method we were told she will be with cast for 6 weeks and then the shoes with the bar but that didn't work she cried so hard when they put her the shoes she had to go back on cast but we are trying to get second opinion I hope she will be ok, I pray to all the parent who are going through this.

Posted by: Lilian on May 21, 2006 10:47 AM

What happen to Nathan?
Our baby may have bilateral club feet - I was just curious on how many people opted for surgery over casting and if they are happy with the decision.

Posted by: Laura on May 22, 2006 09:21 AM

I was born with clubbed feet...but they were facing my butt upwards...i had surgery when i was 11 months but they did the method where they bascially break my feet and then cast them...then i had the surgery...though i am in constant pain and i have numerous problems in my feet, ankles, knees, and back as a 25 year old man..i am glad i can walk and hopefully your son wont have to go threw what i went threw..good luck and glad to see its going well

Posted by: charles on May 24, 2006 10:36 PM

i have a son who is almost 14months he was born with a club right foot and was casted for 2 months and then had shoes for 3months 24/7. the doc. now are sort of being lazy i feel i want some sort of shoe for him or more casting he walks on his toes on the right side .it seems like he is shorter on one side due to he tendent being shorter or some thing? any help or anwsers would be greatly app. thank you

Posted by: holley on May 25, 2006 08:36 PM

My daughter was born 2/22/05 with club feet that looked pretty severe. At 1 week, we began the Ponseti Treatment in which her legs were casted weekly. Then in April, she had surgery to release her archilles tendon. Soon after she was fited for dunbar shoes (or as we now call them, night-night shoes) in which she had to wear 23 hours a day for approximately 3 months. Now she only has to wear them at night for the next 2 years. Her dr is so excited on her prognosis and says she is his best work. Looking back at her newborn pics, wow what a difference. Not only is she running everywhere, I can't keep up with her. What a blessing our Dr. is.

Posted by: amy on June 1, 2006 05:57 AM

I am 5 1/2 months pregnant and me and my husband had a scare based on ultrasound that our baby...our little boy ... my be born with down syndrome or trisomy 18... when we went to get a 2nd opinoin ultrasound with the doctor.. we found out that all though our risk of having a baby with down syndrome or trisomy 18 .. the baby does look like he has club feet... This is such a hard and stressful time for me and my husband and ur story just helps so much. it gives me a lil peace of mind. Good luck with your little angel :)

Posted by: jenny on June 9, 2006 12:59 PM

I was born 21 years ago with it and its destroying my life. My left was casted succesfully right was corrected in surgery. I have more pain than you can ever imagine. I am a paramedic and its all I can do to stay standing for 12 hour shifts. If its advice your all looking for, prepare them. When people ak why I am limping and I tell them I have had arthritis since I was 10 can you imagine how hard it is. I wonder some time is it better to lose your legs in a car crash all at once or feel them slowly disolve away over many years.

Posted by: Bryan B on June 21, 2006 06:19 AM

im 22 weeks i just found out in my ultrasound that my baby has a right club foot i dunno if all this info is making me feel better or freak out a little more but i thank you so much for sharing your story im reall y learning alot and also not feeling so alone

Posted by: nicole on July 19, 2006 10:19 PM

im 22 weeks i just found out in my ultrasound that my baby has a right club foot i dunno if all this info is making me feel better or freak out a little more but i thank you so much for sharing your story im reall y learning alot and also not feeling so alone

Posted by: nicole on July 19, 2006 10:19 PM

My son was born on 06/02/97 with bilateral club feet. This had not showed up on any of the ultrasounds. It was put in cast the night that he was born. The cast were changed out weekly for eight weeks. He had surgery when he was 3 months old. This has been his only surgery. He did have to wear a plastic brace on one leg at night until he was one year old. You would never know that he was born with anything wrong. He now races motorcross, plays baseball, plays soccor, and plays football. This was scary to go through, but I knew that things could be worse. At least this was something that could be corrected.

Posted by: shannon on July 23, 2006 04:36 PM

My son was born with club feet. He is now a year and his feet are doing great. We used the Ponsetti method. The casts I felt bothers the parents more then the child and teh boots and bar become part of his nighly ritual. We call them Magic shoes...so he doesn't think any differently. Recently I noticed he has a blister on one of his feet. SOmeone said that they knew of a guy who made custom made sandal "boot and bars". Does anyone know the name and number of this place?

Posted by: reagan on August 3, 2006 12:20 PM

Our daughter, Natalie, was born in May of 2003 with bilateral club feet. At the ultrasound her feet were so low that the doctor could not see them so we did not know. We are lucky enough to live in Iowa only 90minutes from Dr. Ponseti himself. We saw him when Natalie was 10 days old (which is what Ponseti recommends) and she was casted that day. The change even with the first cast was dramatic. Ponseti was so excellent! He let Natalie lay right on my lap while he worked on her. He was so gentle she did not even cry! She was casted for six weeks. At the last cast her tendon was cut on both sides. They are so skilled at this that we were in the room, she was awake, and it literally took seconds and she has no scar. Then she was in the brace (shoes with a bar) 23 hrs a day for several months (cant remember exactly how long). For Reagan, all the Ponseti club foot clinic in Iowa City, Iowa for the number for custom shoes. I have seen them but Natalie wears the regular ones so I do not have the number. Natalie now is a very active three year old with absolutely no signs of club feet, desite how severe they first were. She wears the braces every night but will be out of them before she is four years old. I can not speak highly enough about Dr. Ponseti and his staff and those he has trained. I will say to parents that many doctors say they are using the Ponseti method. Including the doctor who first say Natalie in the hospital before we went to Iowa City. He wanted to put her under general anethesis just to cast her! At 10 days old!! I would strongly suggest that children either be seen by Dr. Ponseti or someone who trained with Dr. Ponseti - not just someone who "knows" the Ponseti method. This is based on both research I have reviewed and experience. Infact, Natalie's little feet are pictured in one of his research articles :) Some children do regress and even a very small percentage do need to have surgery, even Ponseti will tell you that - but please do not let someone do surgery until you have all the info. There are other, less invasive, less painful, highly successful alternatives available. Any there are even organizations that will pay for your travel or fly you to the U of I to see Ponseti himself! I do not work for Ponseti and get no benefit from spreading the good word about his work. I am just another concerned parent of a club foot baby who wants other parents to know their options! Good luck to all of you.

Posted by: wendi on September 5, 2006 08:01 AM

Just another quick comment about the shoes, braces, boot and bar - what ever you personally call them - you have to make sure your little ones wear them - always - when they are suppose to. Natalie has never slept with out them, not once did we forget or take them off when they were suppose to be on. I think this is really important. The cases that I have heard of where there is regression - often times the shoes were not worn as directed. Trust me - I know this is hard!! Epecially as kids get older. Natalie has only taken hers off once. I have been very careful to not let her she how the buckles are done and I double knot them (although she sometimes still unties them). When she was younger she would lift her legs and slam them down. (We called this "whale tailing" because with a sleep sack over her braces it looked like a big whale tail!) It would but marks in her crib and really hurt if she hit you by accident! I would put batting and fabric around the bar and made little cushioned sippers that went over her shoes to protect from the metal there. It was hard at times because she didnt want to wear them - but you really have to make sure they do! They will thank you for it later :)

Posted by: wendi on September 5, 2006 08:13 AM

My son wa born with a club foot in '98. He was casted maybe the second day after he was born. We changed his cast every other week until he was one year. He then had surgery which was a partial release. For the next 4yrs. he wore a special removable cast that velcroed on 24hrs a day. He could wear a larger shoe on that foot over his cast. In his fifth year he had a second surgery to complete the release. He wore his special cast until he was healed up. Now he is 7yrs. He is a happy and active little boy. He has no problems with his foot. We keep an eye on it to make sure there are no changes. He was a happy active little boy from day 1! It never slowed him down much except right after the surgeries.

Posted by: leslie on September 24, 2006 12:04 PM

I was born with both my feet clubbed. I had the same procedure done as your son had. Im 23 now and have a pretty normal life. Gets hard from time to time, but I have never let it get to me. My mom has encouraged me through everything I have ever done in life. I had a totally normal childhood. I just want to say, after reading some comments from excpecting mothers, that It may seem scary, but its nothing you did or could of done to stop it from happening. I know my mom used to blame herself, saying, "I did something wrong to cause you to have club feet". Truth is she didnt. I dont remember any of the cast, the corrective bars or anything like that. My mom has them to this day, and its really strange seeing them. My mom was told i would never be normal, yet, I was. I had one of the worst cases of conginital club feet my pediactric had ever seen. Yet I was a normal kid playing and doing what all the other kids did.

Posted by: Daniel on September 26, 2006 05:40 AM

My son Shawn was born with severe bi-lateral club feet. He is 11 years old now, and has had a total of four operations on his feet. Shawn's feet revert back every time he takes a growth spurt. My son is a great kid and never complains even though you can physically see how much pain he is in on an active day. Shawn's doctors have told me about Ponseti's method. They said if Shawn had been born a few years after he was this is the method they would recommend. Everything seems to come full circle sometimes in medicine. If I would of had the chance to use this method I would have chosen it. You see with all the operations Shawn has had there is much scar tissue, he now has arthritis in both feet, and the doctors aren't quite sure what to do anymore? But Shawn still doesn't complain and is very active with his friends and enjoys playing and running. God bless you and your family and I really believe your son will fair much better with this method than all of the operations put together. And according to doctors he'll have the same results in the end without all the pain and scar tissue from surgery

Posted by: Susan on October 1, 2006 05:05 AM

My son was born 3/9/06 with bilateral club foot. He went through the Ponsetti method and had his heal cord cut and wore the bar for 3 months and is now wearing it at night. At his last appointment, the doctor declared him to have perfect feet! I am a believer in the Ponsetti method of castings and the bar.

Posted by: Kristin on October 6, 2006 12:10 PM

my son was born with bilateral club feet in 1997. he had surgery when he was a year old.he's nine now and sometimes when it's cold or he was playing too hard they hurt .They look like they are trying to point together at the toes. is there something i could so to ease the pain?

Posted by: nita on October 14, 2006 08:37 PM

Hi my son was born January 13, 06 with his right foot clubbed. He had six cast then the tendon cutting we attempted the shoes with the bar, but they did not fit him right, and we got the shoes fitted three different times, but still they caused massive blistering and redness. We took him back to see the surgeon, and he said don't worry about wearing the shoes, we will do surgery and it will be corrected. he was suppose to have surgery on oct 2 but due to other unforseen medical conditions surgery has been posponed. I am getting very worried and upset now cause it is the end of october and still do not have a go ahead for surgery, he is still unfit for surgery. I am so scared his foot will not be fixed he is ten months old now, can anyone relate to this. Will surgery at ten months old still be able to fix his foot?

Posted by: Amanda on October 23, 2006 11:02 AM

Is there any other technology out there besides the bar- leather shoes that lace up? We are in the process of adopting a 9 month old boy with both feet affected. He had the surgery and was casted but his feet swelled so they removed the casts immediately.
He has had his "freedom" for about 3 months and is really resistant to the shoes. His little feet seem to slip out of the laced shoes so easily. It has only been three days but he is a fighter- and it seems to take me 5 minutes to get them on and two minutes for him to get them off. Any suggestions? Any new technology- like serious velco and snaps vs the laces and buckle strap? Our doctor tells us that is all there is...which I find so difficult to believe. (My mother in law used these same shoes 30 years ago on her other son.) Thanks!!!!

Posted by: Carrie on November 25, 2006 11:23 AM

Our daughter Abby was born with bilateral clubbed feet.She was treated at Shriner's Hospital where she went through the Ponseti method ( serial casting for 10 weeks) and then wore the brace for 22 hours a day for 6 months She had the cord lengthening procedure at 10 months and now wears the brace only at night until she is 4 years of age. Abby was a trooper through the whole process and walks just fine! The important thing to remember about the brace is to make it part of your child's bedtime routine. If the brace is NOT worn every night there is an 80% chance the feet will turn in once more and that could result in surgery. If you would like to ask any questions I would gladly answer any emails. MoreWishes@msn.com

Posted by: Bre on March 14, 2007 11:21 AM

I understand your son was born a year and a half ago but my brothers baby was just diagnosed with club feet through an ultra sound. I am having a very difficult time finding any information on this, especially about it's ties with spino bifida. I was wondering if you may know of any good sites or other resources that are available.

I hope you all are still well. I am sorry to bother you--I know I'm just reaching for straws--Thank You

Posted by: Marie on April 6, 2007 05:45 PM

I have an 18mnth old daughter that was born with bilateral club feet she has gone through 3 surgery's and she's on casts sence she was born. She is such a strong baby stronger than me. At first i couldnt even stay in the room and wacth them do what they had to do. I just couldnt stand hearing her cry that way it just hurts to much. But i told my self i have to be strong for her so it took me a couple of trys so now i just hold it in and stay there with her through everything. The thing now is that i feel the same as i did when i first took her there but i cry on my own time. I've never met anyone with this condition or spoke to anyone that knew someone so people around me dont know what we're going through. But one thing i do know now is that she is doing so much better than when she was born.

Posted by: Maria on April 30, 2007 12:29 AM

my grandson will be born with bilateral club feet i was wondering if there were special clothing considerations...what worked...what did others wish was available?

Posted by: jeanine on June 29, 2007 07:16 PM

I am 18 weeks pregnant with my second son and yesterday I was told he has club foot. I could clearly see what appeared to be that in the ultrasound.

I am happy I live in a developed country. I remember as a child when I visited a developing country and I saw a couple of beggars on the street with club foot. They were young children who still had the condition and it was awful and debilitating..

My son will receive the best care and will go on to live a normal life. Christy Yamaguchi had club feet and it did not stop her.

Posted by: Anonymous on July 3, 2007 12:44 PM

My son was born with bilateral clubfeet as well. I am having such a hard time keeping the shoes on, have any of you had that problem? They said at 2 he will need a tendon transplant...anyone hear of that? And anyone go to shriners in Erie, PA??

Posted by: Harmony on July 10, 2007 08:49 PM

Oh my god what a coencidence my son's name is also Nathan and he was born with bilateral club feet. When i was 4 months pregnant and went to find out the sex of the baby they diagnosted that the baby had clubbed feet, it was a very sad moment for me and my husband. He stated crying and thought that the baby would never be able to play sports or be like all the other kids. When my son was 2 wks old i took him in for his first cast appointtment, it was very sad i started crying and wanted to run out of the room, but then i thought the he needed me more than ever and that i had to be strong. On august 18,2006 he was operated to get his heel cord expanded, a very tough time too, then we went though special shoes and braces, his feet look a little better but he cant still walk so the doctor decided that would be better if he had another surgery and now he is 15 months old and on tuesday 24,2007 he is going to have his second surgery and hopefuly everything will be okay and he will be able to walk. Even though my son is the way he is i am very proud of him and thank god for giving me a beatiful child who is healthy and extremely happy.

Posted by: fernanda avila on July 21, 2007 12:53 PM

my grandson has club feet, he is 7 weeks old, he has been in casts since he was 3 weeks. he kicked the first few off so the dr. thinks he will need an extra week of the intial casting. i just think there should be an easier way than casting, with todays tecnology, the casts have been used since the fifties. seems like someone would have come up with a better way other than casts or surgery. we are trying to get through the casts, he has cuts on his legs from them, so it makes it really hard to see, but we know this is the only way for now.

Posted by: debbie on July 23, 2007 04:23 PM

My oldest son, now 8 was born with bi-lateral club foot. I was told on the day he was born that it'll straighten up and not to worry. When he was 3 month old i seen a surgeon who told me that he had the classic club feet and referred me to sick kids in Toronto. We seen the orthopedic surgeon at sick kids at 5 months who casted him right away and made arrangements for his first surgery. We were told that if he was casted at birth he wouldn't probably have needed surgery. His first surgery was at 7 months old and they had to cut open both feet and reposition his bones and they put in pins to hold everything in place. At 8 months was had to rush back to sick kids (8 hour drive) because he kicked off his one cast and the pin fell out. They had to do another surgery, this time to fix the tendon, of which they were going to do that surgery at 2 years of age.

He is now 8 years old, he play all kinds of sports . He does have cramping in his feet and complain about the pain, but at least he is able to walk and play with other kids and they don't realize that he went thru so much just to be able to walk. Our youngest was born with no problems, except he was pr-mature but that is a totally different story.....

Posted by: Cheryl on August 3, 2007 07:11 AM

Doctors who say casting won't work are doctors who are very much behind the times and living in the dinasaur age.

Not all casting is the same. Just because your doctor uses serial casting does not mean he is using the PONSETI method! Many doctors will tell you different - do your own home work to learn why there is a difference, and WHAT that difference is!!! Ponseti casting is very, very different from normal casting - which is why it has a proven 95+% non-surgical success rate even on the worst of the clubfoot cases it treats.

There is no such thing as a case of clubfoot that this method won't help!

I implore any parent whose doctor says casting wont' work and surgery is needed to PLEASE look further to understand WHY.

http://Six-feet.com is a wonderful resource of information to explain to parents in layman's terms the complex issues of why the Ponseti Method does work, and why any doctor who claims it doesn't is a doctor who has not stayed up to date with medical advances in the past fifty years.

Until you understand WHY the method works, the mechanics involved, you will fall prey to surgical corrections done by less than intellegent doctors. There's no two ways about it.

I beg all parents to do their own research and home work before they just blindly trust a doctor.

http://Six-feet.com is a terrific place to start - it lays it all out in simple english for your consideration. Your baby's future is worth a few minutes to learn more... right?

This website explains why the Ponseti Method is different. Take the time to learn it.

I have three children born with bilateral clubfeet, please, take the time to learn while you can. My oldest fell victim to my ignorance - don't let your own ignorance hurt your child too.

Soggy Bottom Momma

Posted by: Soggy Bottom Momma on August 18, 2007 08:13 PM

I was born with clubfeet in 1985. They were VERY severe. They didn't cast me until I was 2 weeks old and I ended up with 3 surgeries, wore the plastic brace and the metals ones. I'm 21 and still have alot of pain. I had a daughter last March and she was born with a very mild club foot. They say if the parents have it, the baby is more likely to have it as well. We didn't get to the Hershey med center until she was about 2 weeks I guess and they casted her. She had the cast on for a few weeks and every week when she went to get it changed, the doc turned her foot outward more and more. It looked so painful and with her crying I couldn't imagine it. I agree, it is hard on the parent but just think what the baby is going through. Anyways, she wore the boots and bar for 3 months all day and is now only wearing them at night. She's 17 months old now and knows that once those go on it's bedtime. I do have a concern though that I'm going to bring up to the doc at her next appointment which isn't until December. When we first started this process she said my daughter would only have to wear the braces for 12-18 months after she starts wearing them. But everytime we go back she says another 12-18 months. Last time she even said 24 months. My daughter is starting to dislike her crib and my husband and I would like to get her a toddler bed. However, I'm scared she might hurt herself trying to get up and walk with her braces on. I hope it's not much longer. My husband is going to school for nursing and even in those book it states that they would only wear the braces for 1 months. He feels bad sometimes and wants to give her a break from them. Do Not let ur child have a break from the braces!! When I mentioned it to my mom, she confesses that her and my dad did for me and they wished they hadn't. Maybe that might have prevented so many surgeries even though I didn have a heavy case. So far, I've been able to keep on my husband about it whenever he puts her to bed and she hasn't had a night without the braces. I feel so bad, but I know in the long run, it will benefit her. May daughter only has a mild case... I hope it's not much longer...

Posted by: Crystal on September 4, 2007 10:18 PM

Our son Jonah was born with a severe case of bilateral cluubed feet. We didn't know that he had this condition before he was born and was suprised when he was diagnosed. We went to a pediatric specialist when he was 3 days old. This doctor was less than optimistic and harsh with us. So we searched for another doctor. Through our pediatrician and my physical therapist we found another doctor. She is fantastic!!! Her name is Laurel Benson. She prefers the Ponsetti method.
Although the casting and eventual bracing takes discipline, we have found the results to be amazing.
Our son is now 17 months and walking with no issues. He wears his Dennis Brown bar at night, and although he doesn't like it--we stick to it.
The long-term outcome for him is promising.
I guess the key to success is finding a good doctor that will love your baby as much as you do, and believes in the team effort it takes to make the outcome successful. I joke with our doctor that when our son goes to the Superbowl, she will have the best seats!

Posted by: sara on October 12, 2007 09:30 AM

That is good to hear that he is doing so good and is back to him self!

Posted by: haliey on November 28, 2007 10:56 AM


Posted by: DEBORAH on February 10, 2008 06:51 PM

Hi All

My son was born with extreme ly bad case of bileteral club foot in 2000 has had 3 ops to correct.But one foot has seemed to have gradually reverted back inward again.Has anyone had the same experience of it reverting.Please let me know and what was done to correct.


Posted by: Redwaan on February 10, 2008 11:30 PM

Hi All

My son was born with extreme ly bad case of bileteral club foot in 2000 has had 3 ops to correct.But one foot has seemed to have gradually reverted back inward again.Has anyone had the same experience of it reverting.Please let me know and what was done to correct.


Posted by: Redwaan on February 10, 2008 11:37 PM

i just found out im having twin and the are in the same sac that scared me i thought maybe i mite have to choose one or the other i couldnt do that i said i find out on the 14th my due date and have the blood work down

Posted by: christina on February 12, 2008 10:10 AM

HELP!!! My son is in the booties and braces and has somehow managed to get his foot out of his right boot EVERY time I put it on. Ive tried propping his foot up but nothing seems to work. I put the boot on and I hear and couple bangs from him kicking and my 3 month old is home free.... I dont know what to do anymore. You cant explain to him that "its for his own good". PLEASE HELP

Posted by: Wendy on February 21, 2008 07:29 AM

hi all

I�m Jennifer from Germany. My daughter Belana was born in Oct 2007 with a clubfoot, the left side.
The first months the doctors put her leg into a cast.
Some weeks ago Belana got the Alfa-Flex-Brace, developed by Dr. Ponseti. But it doesn�t work, the small Lady gets a blister again and again.
now my husband and me heard about the new Mitchell Brace and I would like to know ifthere is somebody whose kid has got that brace and what the expierences are?
Excuse my bad english!

bye, Jen

Posted by: jennifer on February 29, 2008 09:07 AM

My twins were born this past November and the little one has one clubbed foot. We did immediate casting and tried to use the Ponsetti shoes but alas, the poor boy's foot would not fit into the shoes!
We switched to a brace which is working remarkably well. I highly recommend it!

Posted by: JLW on February 29, 2008 04:49 PM

My son was born in l974 with bilateral club feet. He is one of the luckier ones...he did not require any operations. He received double leg cast when he was 7 days old and they were changed every 3 days for 6 weeks, then a bar going from one foot to the other to be worn 24/7 until age 1, then only at night until 18 months, then shoes on the wrong feet until age 4. When he was of scouting age (10 to 14) long hikes did bother him, but after 14, he played basket ball and golf without many problems.
In his late teen years, his ankles became a minor problem with dislocation and he is extremely flat footed.
Through out his growing years, he continued annual check-ups from a orthopedic doctor.

Posted by: DEBORAH on July 11, 2008 08:18 AM

My son was born in l974 with bilateral club feet. He is one of the luckier ones...he did not require any operations. He received double leg cast when he was 7 days old and they were changed every 3 days for 6 weeks, then a bar going from one foot to the other to be worn 24/7 until age 1, then only at night until 18 months, then shoes on the wrong feet until age 4. When he was of scouting age (10 to 14) long hikes did bother him, but after 14, he played basket ball and golf without many problems.
In his late teen years, his ankles became a minor problem with dislocation and he is extremely flat footed.
Through out his growing years, he continued annual check-ups from a orthopedic doctor.

Posted by: DEBORAH on July 11, 2008 08:19 AM

Hi I had a set of twin girls 8/25/08 and one of them had a club foot we cast her leg/foot for about 2 months and then she started wearing the brace, at first she hated it and now seven months later wearing them at least 23 hours a days, she still hates wearing them and I do also. I do admit her foot looks great she was bless she didn't have to do surgery.She will be going back to the doctor soon and I know the next step she has to wear them only at night maybe she will then get some relief, she know's how to kick the shoes off the brace and wiggle one foot out the shoe.I'm praying for a speedy recovery for her because its stoping her ability to crawl and even roll on her back at times, her twin is passing her up but I will continue to listen to the doctor's order because I want her to be able to have a normal toddler life without worrying about her feet as much.

Posted by: Chundria on April 6, 2009 09:25 AM


My daughter is 14 months old and was born with club feet. She didn't have surgery and wears thes shoes and the bar at night. It's suppossed to be on 12 hours a day, but I can't keep them on more than 5-6 at most.. I think many nights its around 5 maybe and she wakes up a lot screaming until there taken off. This seemed to happen more after 1 year of age as her legs got stronger.

Is anyone else having this problem and how have you dealt with it? We can't get any sleep.

Posted by: RVV on July 11, 2009 11:57 PM

I read Karri's comment, my granddaughter was born with bi-lateral Clubbed Feet, severe. She is now four and will face her 6th and 7th surgery. She has been in casts and braces since birth. I am so sad. I just wish it could be different. I need your encouragement. Thank you. Betty

Posted by: Betty on August 18, 2009 04:38 PM

What happened to six-foot.com. I just had a baby with clubfoot and I was told it is a great source to start with ?

Posted by: Tina Lamino on October 13, 2009 05:46 AM

I gave birth to my daughter in August 2008 and she was born with severe bilateral clubbed feet...she started the weekly casting at 10 days old, she was in the casts for 8 and a half months. She had the heel cord cut at 5 months and we tried the white shoes and bar and they gave her a blister which set her back about 3 weeks.....she was then in casts again and on her daddys 20th birthday, we had her appt and the doctor said its time for her shoes for the first 3 months of 24 hours.....and moved onto just at night for her shoes. It has been the hardest thing I have ever done and I am still angry with my husbands family for not warning us ahead of time. They went thru this and still think its the easiest thing to do. My daughter took 8 months after her casts came off to learn to walk. It hurts her so much when I stretch her. I wonder to myself if this is really helping or if she is stuck for the rest of her life...

Posted by: Stevie on January 27, 2010 02:01 PM

Hi my son was born in January 2010 at no time did any of my ultra sounds or sonograms shoe that he had club feet at 12 weeks he was referred to doctor schutt from Texas tech in lubbock texas who use the ponesti method. At his first visit I was suprised that he cast him right away. He used casts 4 weeks only then he was but in the Dennis brown shoes. But at 2 weeks of using the shoes he got blisters because the shoes where to big so he told me to let him be with out the shoes for a week then on April 9 he had surgery to losen the tendion on his hells. After 2 weeks of surgery he once again is in the Dennis brown shoes and his feet look a lot better and his shoes fit. In 6 weeks he goes back for a check by then he will need new shoes that fit.thank god he is doing good

Posted by: Rosa on April 23, 2010 08:58 PM