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Rev Bras Ortop. 2016 Aug 9;51(5):501-508. eCollection 2016 Sep-Oct.

Surgical treatment of neglected clubfoot using external fixator.

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Hospital Estadual da Criança, Rio de Janeiro, RJ, Brazil.
Universidade Federal de Santa Catarina (UFSC), Departamento de Ortopedia, Florianópolis, SC, Brazil.
Hospital de Urgência e Emergência Metropolitano de Ananindeua, Ananindeua, PA, Brazil.
Hospital Felício Rocho, Belo Horizonte, MG, Brazil.
Universidade de São Paulo, Faculdade de Medicina, Hospital das Clínicas, Instituto de Ortopedia e Traumatologia, São Paulo, SP, Brazil.


in English, Portuguese

The definition of neglected clubfoot (NC) includes a variable range of complex deformities of the foot that are refractory to conventional treatments or are treated inappropriately. Several etiologies may be related to this. The Ilizarov method has become established as a tool for treating these deformities. It minimizes soft-tissue damage through gradual correction of the deformity, with a high success rate in relation to achieving a plantigrade foot, with low incidence of recurrence. The indications for treatment include severe rigid deformities (Dimeglio III and IV), or adverse skin conditions. Careful clinical and radiological examination is fundamental for proper planning and installation of the external fixator. The techniques used include selection of external fixation assemblies, which can be closed when there is a connection between the leg, hindfoot and forefoot. This closed assembly may or may not be constricted, according to whether hinges are provided or whether use of the natural anatomical hinges during correction of the deformity is envisaged. An open assembly makes it possible to add flexibility to the foot through histogenesis, while allowing closed corrections of greater precision later on. Hexapod fixators are an innovation with high potential for accuracy in correcting deformities. Procedures associated with external fixation include soft-tissue release and bone procedures. These procedures enable corrections that are more anatomical, for different degrees of severity and stiffness of deformity. It can be concluded from analyzing this case series that treatment of neglected clubfoot using an external fixator has a high rate of good and excellent results, with low frequency of complications.


Clubfoot; Congenital abnormalities; External fixation; External fixators; Surgical procedures, operative

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