Wednesday, 13 February 2013
CLUBFOOT DEFORMITY IN KENYA
Children with physical disabilities are quite often socially and economically disadvantaged. Educational opportunities are reduced through selection bias and because of transportation difficulties, employment opportunities are reduced for similar reasons. In addition, mothers of children with physical disabilities have to spend more time looking after them and therefore have less time for other children or for domestic and other economic activities. This often results in a reduced standard of living for the entire family.
Like many developing countries, Kenya has a considerable number of children with physical disabilities and one out of three of these children have a clubfoot.The incidence of clubfeet is 1 per 1000 live births. Around 1400 children with idiopathic clubfoot are born every year in Kenya Many of these children are receiving little or no treatment for their foot deformity for reasons such as;
a) Clubfoot deformity is not recognized at birth: Many birth attendants particularly in rural areas are unaware of the clubfoot deformity and the need for early treatment
b) When recognized there is no treatment available: Even when identified, lack of trained (para) medical personnel result in treatment being unavailable
c) Inadequate treatment: Many (para) medical personnel have not had an opportunity to upgrade their skills over the years and are therefore unaware of the Ponseti method of managing the congenital clubfoot. The Ponseti Method has been shown to be the most effective method of correction)