what is the clinical term for clubfoot

What is the clinical term for clubfoot?

Clubfoot is the non-technical or medical name for a common birth deformity of the foot. Clubfoot as a term is widely used and several medical textbooks use the word clubfoot in the title.

The more technical or clinical name for a clubfoot is ‘talipes’; ‘tali-‘ refers to the talus bone where the bulk of the deformity of the clubfoot is located and ‘-pes’ refers to the foot, so it is a deformity of of the foot primarily located in the talus bone.

There are 4 types of talipes: equinovarus, equinovalgus, calcaneovarus, and calcaneovalgus.

‘Equino-‘ means the foot is plantarflexed or pointing downwards
‘Calcaneo-‘ means the foot is dorsiflexed or pointing upwards
‘Varus-‘ means the foot is inverted with the soles of both feet facing each other
‘Valgus-‘ means the foot is everted with the soles of both feet facing away from each other

By far the most common form is talipes equinovarus, and when people say clubfoot, they are most likely referring to this type of talipes equinovarus. This is the deformity of the foot (‘pes’) located at the talus (‘tali’) in which the foot is pointing downwards (‘equino’) and inwards (‘varus’).

For all intensive purposes, the terms ‘clubfoot’ and ‘talipes equinovarus’ are probably interchangeable.

Craig Payne Administrator
About me: University lecturer, clinician, runner, cynic, researcher, skeptic, forum admin, woo basher, clinician, rabble-rouser, blogger, dad.