CONTACT: TOM MOORE
Joint Office for Planning, Marketing and Communications
8788 John Pappajohn Pavilion
Iowa City IA 52242
Release: Oct. 31, 2001
'Ponseti method' information now available online in Spanish
IOWA CITY, Iowa -- Users of the World Wide Web can now obtain information
about the non-surgical treatment of clubfoot in Spanish on the University
of Iowa Health Care online site.
Information about the non-surgical treatment of clubfeet was previously available
in English. The URL address for the Spanish translation is http://www/vh.org/Patients/IHB/Ortho/Peds/Clubfeet/Espanol.html.
Jose Morcuende, M.D., Ph.D., assistant professor in the UI department of orthopaedic
surgery, worked on the translation project with Ignacio Ponseti, M.D., UI
professor emeritus of orthopaedic surgery and the founder and namesake of
the non-surgical clubfoot treatment method.
The "Ponseti method" uses manual manipulations and casting instead
of the medical establishment's longstanding practice of surgically correcting
babies born with clubfoot. Clubfoot is the most common birth defect of the
lower extremities. The disorder involves the inward and downward turning of
one foot or both feet.
Ponseti, 87, a native of Spain, treated hundreds of soldiers with orthopaedic
wounds during the Spanish Civil War. After the war he came to the United States
and studied under Arthur Steindler, M.D., who chaired the UI department of
During the 1950s, Ponseti took special interest in children with clubfoot
and developed the "Ponseti method." His studies helped define the
basic nature of clubfoot and demonstrated the steps to follow to achieve a
successful non-surgical correction of the deformity.
Research shows that children born with clubfoot who are treated surgically
very often are left with pain and stiffness in their feet and ankles later
in life. In contrast, studies found that children treated with the "Ponseti
method" typically have normal foot and ankle function.
Although only a handful of orthopaedic surgeons (among them Morcuende, Frederick
Dietz, M.D. and Stuart Weinstein, M.D., of UI Health Care) used his relatively
simple method in recent years, the pendulum has begun to swing as public and
professional awareness has grown. Today, more and more orthopaedic surgeons
worldwide are recognizing the "Ponseti method" as the proper, safe
way to correct the deformity.
University of Iowa Health Care describes the partnership between the
UI College of Medicine and the UI Hospitals and Clinics and the patient care,
medical education and research programs and services they provide. Visit UI
Health Care online at www.uihealthcare.com.