Skip Navigation LinksHome > March 2014 - Volume 34 - Issue 2 > Positive Communication Paradigm Decreases Early Recurrence i...
Journal of Pediatric Orthopaedics:
doi: 10.1097/BPO.0000000000000080
Lower Extremity

Positive Communication Paradigm Decreases Early Recurrence in Clubfoot Treatment

Morin, Matthew L. BS; Hoopes, Daniel M. MD; Szalay, Elizabeth A. MD

Collapse Box


Background: The Ponseti method has become the treatment standard for idiopathic clubfoot. Deformity recurrence is most commonly attributed to premature abandonment of the requisite abduction orthosis. A study in 2009 from our center revealed a high rate of deformity recurrence in our patient population. It was surmised that the importance of bracing to maintain correction had not been adequately communicated to some families, especially Native Americans. As a result, the principal investigator developed a different communication protocol for parents of infants.

Methods: All children treated for clubfoot at the University of New Mexico Carrie Tingley Hospital, Albuquerque, NM, from 2008 to 2010 were reviewed. They were compared with a historical control group from this institution, the subjects of the 2009 study, and were analyzed for the rate of recurrence and Pirani score improvement.

Results: Our study cohort comprised 69 infants (104 clubfeet), all of whom were treated with the new communication style. The recurrence rate for the new communication paradigm was 2.88% compared with 18.2% in the control group (P<0.001). The Pirani score improvement was 4.0 in the treatment group compared with 3.5 in the control group (P=0.001). Native American recurrence was zero in the treatment group and 41% in the control group (P=0.011).

Conclusions: A positive, rather than a negative communication style, emphasis on the brace as the most important aspect of treatment, and a more culturally sensitive family education paradigm, resulted in a lower rate of deformity recurrence when treating children with clubfeet using the Ponseti method.

Level of Evidence: Level III.

© 2014 by Lippincott Williams & Wilkins

The Pediatric Orthopaedic Society of North America (POSNA)
is a group of healthcare professionals, primarily pediatric orthopaedic surgeons, dedicated to advancing musculoskeletal care of children and adolescents. JPO is our official member journal. 
Like us on facebook and become a member today!


Article Tools


Article Level Metrics

Search for Similar Articles
You may search for similar articles that contain these same keywords or you may modify the keyword list to augment your search.