Neurologic pes cavus is a progressive deformity that is difficult to treat during growth. The present study reports results of non-operative management, based on the pathophysiology of the deformity, by untwisting nocturnal splint, preceded in some cases by untwisting walking cast. The objective was to assess efficacy and impact on indications for surgery.
Twenty-three children (35 feet) were included. All had neurologic cavovarus foot, which was progressive in 24 feet (69%) (Charcot-Marie-Tooth disease). Mean age at initiation of treatment was 8.8 years. In 13 feet (38%), treatment began with a untwisting walking cast and in 22 (62%) began directly with the splint.
Mean follow-up was 4.5 years. Fifteen feet showed very good and 8 good clinical results (65%); 9 children (12 feet) had moderate or poor results, requiring renewed treatment in 11 feet at a mean 4.5 years after initiation of non-operative treatment. Thirteen patients (56.5%, 21 feet) had reached end of growth by last follow-up; 10 of these feet (48%) had good or very good results without surgery. No triple arthrodeses were required. Factors weighing against good outcome comprised young age at treatment initiation and poor compliance with the splint. Primary deformity severity did not affect outcome.
The present study demonstrated efficacy for non-operative treatment of childhood neurologic cavovarus foot. Surgery was either avoided (in half of the cases followed up to end of growth) or delayed by a mean 4.5 years, allowing a single procedure before end of growth. We recommend initiating non-operative treatment of childhood cavovarus foot, associating untwisting walking cast and untwisting nocturnal splint, as soon as clinical progression is detected and/or Méary angle on lateral X-ray with block reaches 15°.
Level of evidence
IV.Le texte complet de cet article est disponible en PDF.
Keywords : Neurologic cavovarus foot, Splint, Non-operative treatment, Child