What is metatarsus adductus?
Metatarsus adductus is defined as a condition whereby the metatarsal bones on the front of the foot are rotated inwards. The foot appears ‘bean’ shaped.
How common is this condition?
It occurs in about 1 per 1000 births. It usually affects both feet. Metatarsus adductus is the most common child foot deformity. The condition can be categorised as rigid or flexible. Metatarsus adductus is often related to clubfoot and hip dysplasia.
What causes metatarsus adductus?
It is believed that the condition is due to the position of the feet while in the womb.
What is the medical management for this condition?
Metatarsus adductus is usually self limiting and self correctable by 1 year old in 80-90% of the cases. For flexible metatarsus adductus, monitoring the feet and stretching is usually the first line of management. Paediatric physiotherapist will teach the family how to stretch the foot properly. As infant’s feet are soft and malleable, incorrect stretching technique may cause other foot deformity. At times, shoes that reverse the direction of the metatarsus bones may be prescribed by your physiotherapist or doctor in attempt to correct the deformity.
For rigid metatarsus adductus that does not response to stretching, surgical correction may be considered. However, it is rarely performed, reserved only for severe deformity. Complications such as scar pain, avascular necrosis of bones in feet and foot arthritis may be resulted.
Disclaimer: The information and advice contained in or made available through this website is for educational purposes only and is not intended to replace the services of a health professional/physiotherapist or to be a substitute for medical advice of physicians.
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