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Foot and Ankle Abnormalities in the Hurler Syndrome: Additions to the Phenotype

Kennedy, Jim MCh; Noel, Jacque FRCS (Trauma & Orth); O’Meara, Anne MD; Kelly, Paula FRCS (Trauma & Orth)

Journal of Pediatric Orthopaedics: July/August 2013 - Volume 33 - Issue 5 - p 558–562
doi: 10.1097/BPO.0b013e318280a124

Background: After successful hematopoietic stem cell transplantation maintaining function and mobility has become the key goal in the management of patients with mucopolysaccharoidosis type 1 (MPS-1). We detail the foot and ankle pathology in 18 patients with MPS-1 managed in our unit.

Methods: Functional assessment was performed using the Oxford Foot and Ankle Questionnaire for children (OxAFQ-C). Morphologic assessment was performed by means of a mirrored foot photograph box, the Foot Posture Index (FPI), and clinical photography. Standardized radiologic investigations were sought when clinically warranted. Average lateral talus-first metatarsal angle, anteroposterior and lateral talocalcaneal angles, and lateral distal tibial angle (LDTA) were determined.

Results: The average patient-reported OxAFQ-C score was 44.7 (range, 10 to 60). The average proxy-reported OxAFQ-C score was 45.7 (range, 11 to 60). Ten of the 18 patients wore customized footwear. Of the 36 feet examined 11 were found scored as “highly pronated” (FPI>+9), 12 feet had a “pronated posture” (FPI +6 to +9), and 13 feet were found to have a “normal posture” (FPI 0 to +5). Thirteen of the 18 (72%) patients studied had curly toes. The average talus-first metatarsal angle recorded was 10.7 degrees (range, −7 to 30 degrees). The average lateral and anteroposterior talocalcaneal angles were 45.8 degrees (range, 16 to 62 degrees) and 31 degrees (range, 1 to 51 degrees), respectively. The average LDTA was found to be 70.6 degrees (range, 48 to 82 degrees). A single-sample Student t test shows significant divergence of measured LDTA, OxAFQ-C, and FPI from normal populations (P<0.005).

Conclusions: MPS-1 is associated with a significant degree of foot and ankle pathology that has not been previously described. We found a high incidence of curly toes, ankle valgus, functional foot, and ankle disability and a requirement for customized footwear among our cohort. We recommend that careful assessment of foot and ankle pathology should be routine in the interdisciplinary management of patients with MPS-1.

Level of Evidence: Level III.

Our Lady’s Children’s Hospital, Crumlin, Dublin, Ireland

None of the authors received financial support for this study.

The authors declare no conflict of interest.

Reprints: Jim Kennedy, MCh, Specialist Registrar Trauma & Orthopaedic Surgery, Our Lady’s Children’s Hospital, Crumlin, Dublin, Ireland. E-mail:

© 2013 by Lippincott Williams & Wilkins