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Capital & Coast DHB Orthopaedic Service

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Congenital Talipes Equinovaus (Club Foot)

Talipes or club foot is a congenital deformity (present at birth) where the baby’s foot (or feet) is turned inwards.  In most cases, club foot is diagnosed by the typical appearance of a baby's foot after they are born. As ultrasound scanning during pregnancy improves, talipes is also being detected during routine scanning before a baby is born. Around half of all babies with club foot have bilateral club foot (both feet are affected). Sometimes only the soft tissue is involved, while in others the bones may also be affected.

Talipes is one of the most common birth deformities, affecting approximately 1 in every 1000 babies born. In Maori or Polynesian babies this figure may be as high as 6 in every 1000 babies born. Talipes is diagnosed in twice as many boys than girls.

This page was last updated at 4:23PM on December 3, 2019.