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Management issues of congenital talipes equinovarus in the neonatal intensive care unit: A systematic review



The Ponseti method is the standard of care for managing idiopathic congenital talipes equinovarus (clubfoot) in the outpatient setting, but there are no clinical guidelines for inpatient treatment. Children in the neonatal intensive care unit (NICU) with clubfoot often delay treatment initiation due to medical reasons.


We systematically reviewed literature related to the treatment of clubfoot in the NICU, non-idiopathic clubfoot, and older infants, as well as barriers to care.


In a mixed NICU population of syndromic and idiopathic clubfoot, the Ponseti method has good functional outcomes with minimal interference with medical management. The Ponseti method has good functional outcomes with reduced need for extensive surgical procedures in non-idiopathic clubfoot and idiopathic clubfoot with delayed presentation (under one year of age).


It is possible to begin Ponseti treatment in the NICU without compromising medical management. It is not clear if this confers an advantage over waiting for outpatient casting.

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