Bloomington (812) 333-4422
Washington (812) 254-2911


Types of Congenital Foot Disorders

Congenital foot problems are known as birth defects, and they occur before a baby is born. Clubfoot is defined as the foot and ankle being twisted out of their normal position. There are two categories of clubfoot, consisting of positional and true. The former happens from being in an awkward position in the uterus and can be corrected after birth by immobilizing the joints. Additionally, manipulation can be performed that can help to stretch the foot and ankle.  True clubfoot is an abnormally structured foot, which happens during the baby’s development.  This is often corrected by performing surgery, which can be complex. Metatarsus adductus is a congenital foot condition that is noticeable as the foot turns inward, and wearing corrective shoes or splints may accelerate correction. When the bottom of the foot is turned inward, it raises the arch, and this is indicative of metatarsus varus. This generally develops as a result of unusual positioning in the womb. If you would like additional information about congenital foot disorders, please consult a podiatrist who can provide you with the information you are seeking.

Congenital foot problems require immediate attention to avoid future complications. If you have any concerns, contact our podiatrist of Dr. Powers Foot and Ankle. Our doctor can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

Congenital foot problems are deformities affecting the feet, toes, and/or ankles that children are born with. Some of these conditions have a genetic cause while others just happen. Some specific foot ailments that children may be born with include clubfeet, polydactyly/macrodactyly, and cleft foot. There are several other foot anomalies that can occur congenitally. What all of these conditions have in common is that a child may experience difficulty walking or performing everyday activities, as well as trouble finding footwear that fits their foot deformity. Some of these conditions are more serious than others. Consulting with a podiatrist as early as possible will help in properly diagnosing a child’s foot condition while getting the necessary treatment underway.

What are Causes of Congenital Foot Problem?

A congenital foot problem is one that happens to a child at birth. These conditions can be caused by a genetic predisposition, developmental or positional abnormalities during gestation, or with no known cause.

What are Symptoms of Congenital Foot Problems?

Symptoms vary by the congenital condition. Symptoms may consist of the following:

  • Clubfoot, where tendons are shortened, bones are shaped differently, and the Achilles tendon is tight, causing the foot to point in and down. It is also possible for the soles of the feet to face each other.
  • Polydactyly, which usually consists of a nubbin or small lump of tissue without a bone, a toe that is partially formed but has no joints, or an extra toe.
  • Vertical talus, where the talus bone forms in the wrong position causing other bones in the foot to line up improperly, the front of the foot to point up, and the bottom of the foot to stiffen, with no arch, and to curve out.
  • Tarsal coalition, when there is an abnormal connection of two or more bones in the foot leading to severe, rigid flatfoot.
  • Cleft foot, where there are missing toes, a V-shaped cleft, and other anatomical differences.
  • Macrodactyly, when the toes are abnormally large due to overgrowth of the underlying bone or soft tissue.

Treatment and Prevention

While there is nothing one can do to prevent congenital foot problems, raising awareness and receiving neonatal screenings are important. Early detection by taking your child to a podiatrist leads to the best outcome possible.

If you have any questions please feel free to contact one of our offices located in Bloomington, Bedford, and Washington, IN . We offer the newest diagnostic tools and technology to treat your foot and ankle needs.

Read more about Congenital Foot Problems

Connect with us