Although the neurological defects associated with cerebral palsy are not progressive, secondary musculoskeletal disorders due to growth and gravity are variable. In the clinical analysis of spastic foot deformities different mechanisms that produce a variety of deformities have to be analyzed. The goals of surgical treatment are correction of the deformity, reestablishment of stability of the foot and preservation of functionally important ranges of motion and muscle strength. The most common spastic foot deformities are equinus, planovalgus, equinovarus and calcaneus. For treatment soft tissue surgery, such as muscle lengthening and transfer together with bone surgery, such as osteotomy or arthrodesis are used and combinations of these methods are often required. Subsequently postoperative plasters are necessary followed by dynamic orthotic management.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: We treated 22 children (28 limbs) with diplegic cerebral palsy who were able to walk by the Baumann procedure for correction of fixed contracture of the gastrosoleus as part of multilevel single-stage surgery to improve gait. The function of the ankle was assessed by clinical examination and gait analysis before and at two years (2.1 to 4.0) after operation. At follow-up the ankle showed an increase in dorsiflexion at initial contact, in single stance and in the swing phase. There was an increase in dorsiflexion at initial push-off without a decrease in the range of movement of the ankle, and a significant improvement in the maximum flexor moment in the ankle in the second half of single stance. There was also a change from abnormal generation of energy in mid-stance to the normal pattern of energy absorption. Positive work during push-off was significantly increased. Lengthening of the gastrocnemius fascia by the Baumann procedure improved the function of the ankle significantly, and did not result in weakening of the triceps surae. We discuss the anatomical and mechanical merits of the procedure.
The Bone & Joint Journal 06/2000; 82(4):535-40. · 3.31 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: We assessed the medium-term outcome of three methods of isolated calf lengthening in cerebral palsy by clinical examination, observational gait analysis and, where appropriate, instrumented gait analysis. The procedures used were percutaneous lengthening of tendo Achillis, open Z-lengthening of tendo Achillis and lengthening of the gastrosoleus aponeurosis (Baker's procedure). We reviewed 195 procedures in 134 children; 45 had hemiplegia, 65 diplegia and 24 quadriplegia. We established the incidence of calcaneus and recurrent equinus and identified 'at-risk' groups for each. At follow-up, 42% had satisfactory calf length, 22% had recurrent equinus and 36% calcaneus. The incidence of calcaneus in girls at follow-up was significantly higher (p = 0.002) while boys had an increased rate of recurrent equinus (p = 0.012). Children with diplegia who had surgery when aged eight years or younger had a 44% risk of calcaneus, while those over eight years had a 19% risk (p = 0.046). Percutaneous lengthening of tendo Achillis in diplegia was the least predictable, only 38% having a satisfactory outcome compared with 50% in the other procedures. The incidence of recurrent equinus in hemiplegic patients was 38%. Only 4% developed calcaneus. The type of surgery did not influence the outcome in patients with hemiplegia or quadriplegia. Severity of involvement, female gender, age at operation of less than eight years and percutaneous lengthening of tendo Achillis were 'risk factors' for calcaneus. Hemiplegia, male gender, and an aponeurosis muscle lengthening increased the risk of recurrent equinus.
The Bone & Joint Journal 05/2001; 83(3):364-70. · 3.31 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The aim of this study was to determine the extent of ankle muscle weakness in children with cerebral palsy (CP) and to identify potential causes. Maximal voluntary contractions of plantar (PF) and dorsiflexors (DF) were determined at optimal angles in knee flexion and extension in both legs of 14 children with hemiplegia (7 males, 7 females) and 14 with diplegia (8 males, 6 females). Their results were compared to 14 age- and weight-matched control participants (5 males, 9 females). Muscle cross-sectional areas of soleus, posterior, and anterior compartment muscles were determined from MRIs in 14 children with CP (eight diplegia, six hemiplegia) and 18 control children. Specific tension (torque/unit area) of PF and DF was determined from torque and cross-sectional area results. Muscle volumes of PF and DF were also determined in both legs of five control children and five with hemiplegia. Muscle EMG was recorded from soleus, medial gastrocnemius, and tibialis anterior during each maximal voluntary contraction. Mean amplitude was significantly reduced in PF and DF in both CP groups and significantly higher levels of coactivation of antagonists were found compared to control participants. Strength of PF and DF was significantly reduced in both CP groups, but more importantly the muscles were found to be weak based on significantly reduced specific tensions. The PF were most affected, particularly in the group with hemiplegia. It is believed that an inability to maximally activate their muscles contributed to this weakness. A combination of incomplete activation and high levels of PF coactivation are thought to have contributed to DF weakness.
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