Conservative treatment for equinus deformity in children with cerebral palsy using an adjustable splint-assisted ankle-foot orthosis

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Abstract

Background:

A novel splint, the assisting ankle-foot orthoses (AFO), was developed to provide adjustable sustained stretching to improve conservative treatment for equinus deformities in children with cerebral palsy (CP). The treatment effect was validated by follow-up visits.

Methods:

This study involved subjects between 2 and 12 years old, including 28 CP children treated with splint-assisted AFO correction, 30 CP children treated with static AFO correction, and 30 normal children with typical development (TD). Quantitative pedobarographic measurements were taken to evaluate the effect of splint-assisted AFO correction. The heel/forefoot ratio was introduced to indicate the degree of the equinus deformity during treatment.

Results:

The results showed that the heel/forefoot ratios were 1.41 ± 0.26 for the TD children; 0.65 ± 0.41, 1.02 ± 0.44, and 1.24 ± 0.51 for the splint-assisted AFO correction before and after 6-month and 12-month treatments; 0.59 ± 0.37, 0.67 ± 0.44, and 0.66 ± 0.42 for the static AFO correction before and after 6-month and 12-month treatments.

Conclusions:

This study suggests that correction with the adjustable splint-assisted AFO is an effective treatment for equinus deformity in CP Children.

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