A pediatric orthopedic surgeon specializes in treating children of all ages who have injuries or conditions to their musculoskeletal systems. Conditions treated by pediatric orthopedic physicians include but are not limited to clubfeet, fractures and scoliosis.
Clubfoot is a deformity of the foot that causes the foot to turn inward and downward. The Achilles tendon becomes pulls the heel upward prevents the foot to lay flat on the ground. A club foot is may be smaller than the average-sized foot. Clubfoot is easily diagnosed during a physical examination, but an x-ray of the foot will also be taken. In some cases the condition may be detected before birth in a fetal ultrasound.
Clubfoot is usually correct just after birth. Treatment options include:
The foot is placed in a series of casts. A new cast is put on every week for 5-10 weeks to stretch and reshape the soft tissues of the foot. A brace is may also used while the child sleeps.
Some children may require surgery to correct the deformed tendons and muscles. Surgery is most commonly done within the first year of life.
A fracture is a break in any bone in the body. Fractures are usually caused by falls, twists, blows, or collisions. There are different kinds of fractures and each fracture has its own treatment.
Generally treatment for fractures involves:
- Putting the pieces of bone together and keeping the pieces together while the bone heals itself. Devices that can hold a bone in place while it heals include:
- A cast (may be used with or without surgery)
- Surgery to add metal pins, metal plates with screws, screws or rods down the middle of the bone.
Healing and Rehabilitation
Healing time ranges from three weeks to many months. All fractures require rehabilitation so that patients can rebuild muscle strength and range of motion.
Scoliosis is an abnormal curvature of the spine that creates a C- or S-shape. This can result in uneven shoulders and hips.
Treatment varies depending on age and the degree of the curve. Treatments include:
A doctor may monitor the curve by examining a patient every 3-6 months.
A doctor may recommend that you wear a back brace to prevent on getting the curve from worsening.
Surgery to correct a curve or stop it from worsening is recommended in severe cases. Surgery involves fusing the vertebrae of the spine together or the use of internal rods to decrease the curvature.
Copyright© 2013 EBSCO Publishing All rights reserved.
Find Physician at Plantation General Hospital
Call (954) 321-4099 for a FREE physician referral or search our physician database