Palm Beach Florida Weekly

Treatments available to correct clubfoot



The March of Dimes defines Clubfoot (also called talipes equinovarus) as a birth defect of the foot. It’s when a baby’s foot turns inward so that the bottom of the foot faces sideways or even up. This happens because the tissues that connect muscles to bone (called tendons) in a baby’s leg and foot are shorter than normal.

Clubfoot is one of the most common congenital deformities that occur in otherwise normal infants and is present at birth. The March of Dimes estimates that about 1 in 1,000 babies is born with clubfoot in the United States each year. About half of all babies with clubfoot have it in both feet. Birth defects are structural changes present at birth that can affect almost any part of the body. They may affect how the body looks, works or both.

There are two types of clubfoot:

Isolated clubfoot (also called idiopathic clubfoot). This is the most common type. It happens in children who have no other medical problems.



Nonisolated clubfoot. This type happens together with other health problems, like arthrogryposis or spina bifida. A baby with arthrogryposis is born with joint problems that make it hard for them to move their hands or legs. Joints may not move the right way or they may get stuck in one position.

There isn’t a known cause of clubfoot. It may be genetic, but regardless of the cause, it can be corrected. Here at St. Mary’s Medical Center and the Palm Beach Children’s Hospital, we are a leader in treatment of this condition. Our hospital is home to the Dobbs Clubfoot Center at the Paley Orthopedic & Spine Institute, under the direction of Matthew Dobbs, MD, FACS.

Dr. Dobbs is an innovator in minimally invasive surgery for congenital and developmental foot and lower extremity deformities as well as torticollis. (e.g. congenital vertical talus, congenital knee dislocation, nail-patella syndrome, congenital muscular torticollis, and lower extremity tendon lengthening in patients with cerebral palsy spasticity). He has lectured and taught in more than 60 countries and has run an international fellows training program for more than 15 years. Dr. Dobbs also developed a brace to maintain clubfoot correction. The brace, which bears his name, is utilized in over 50 countries and has helped thousands of clubfoot patients avoid relapse and the need for further intervention.

For more information on the Dobbs Clubfoot Center, log on to or find more information on Dr. Dobbs at: matthew-dobbs/#/ or by calling 561-844-5255. Dobbs Clubfoot Center at the Paley Orthopedic & Spine Institute is at 5325 Greenwood Ave., Suite 203, West Palm Beach, FL 33407. ¦

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