A GP guide to congenital hand and foot conditions
Need to know:
- Most elective surgery for congenital hand and foot deformities is performed after six months of age, with the majority done after 12 months.
- The decision may be made to correct foot issues prior to walking as the child is easier to manage.
- Many hand differences are best corrected prior to the development of bimanual transferring activities.
- Some congenital issues do not need surgery but may need splinting
- Referral is warranted to assess the best treatment option and to follow the child’s function and development.
- Parents need to be made aware of the natural history of the condition as well as the management options available for their child.
Mem Fox draws a sweeping generalisation in her widely read children’s book Ten little fingers and ten little toes that is not always reflected in the general paediatric population — particularly those attending paediatric plastic