Rare & Complex Foot Deformities Treatment

The Foot & Ankle Center
at Modern Orthopedics of New Jersey

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72 Route 17 North
Paramus, NJ 07652


2025 Hamburg Turnpike
STE C, Wayne, NJ 07470


3799 US-46
#207, Parsippany, NJ 07054

Composed of 26 distinct bones, 33 joints, and over 100 muscles, tendons, and ligaments, the human foot is a complex structure that, together with the ankle and lower limb, is responsible for supporting the weight of the body and enabling locomotion and balance in an upright position. Injuries or deformities that affect the function of the foot can have a significant impact on mobility and overall quality of life.

Rare and complex foot deformities encompass a range of different conditions that are uncommon in the general population and require specialized knowledge and experience to effectively treat. At Modern Orthopaedics of New Jersey, our award-winning surgeons are leaders in the advanced diagnosis and treatment of such conditions and approach each and every case with the utmost professionalism and expertise.

Below, we’ve provided an overview of some of the rare and complex foot deformities that our surgical team specializes in treating. That being said, these examples represent just a small sampling of the many unique conditions and cases we take on at our world-class clinic. To learn more about treatment options that can help to correct your or your child’s foot deformity, contact our clinic to book a consultation today!

Common Types of Rare and Complex Foot Deformities

This 9-month-old infant has vertical talus in both feet.

Reproduced from Kasser JR, ed: Orthopaedic Knowledge Update, ed 5. Rosemont, IL, American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons, 1996, p 507.

Our surgical team at Modern Orthopaedics of New Jersey treats many types of foot deformities including bunions, hammertoes, flat feet, cavus foot, clubfoot, tarsal coalition, in-toeing, and more. Some of the most rare and complex include:

Cleft Foot

A cleft foot is a congenital deformity characterized by improper foot development in utero. People with this condition typically have a distinctive V-shaped cleft in their feet, which may also be accompanied by missing toes and/or other abnormalities. This condition may affect the ability to walk and is often treated surgically to improve both the function and appearance of the feet.

Vertical Talus

Vertical talus, also known as congenital vertical talus, is a foot deformity characterized by a talus bone that has formed in the wrong position resulting in the misalignment of the other bones in the feet. Babies born with this condition often have toes that point upward and feet with a tell-tale “rocker bottom” shape instead of a typical arch.


Macrodactyly is a condition in which one or more of a baby’s fingers or toes are abnormally large. It can occur on its own or in combination with other deformities or conditions. Macrodactyly is commonly static, but can also present as a progressive condition (meaning that the affected fingers or toes grow at a faster rate than the rest of the hand or foot). It is often treated surgically.

Causes and Risk Factors

Rare and complex foot deformities can be caused by many different factors. Broadly speaking, these include:

Genetic Factors

Some foot deformities are inherited or are the result of genetic mutations. Often, these types of deformities can be diagnosed at birth or soon after, though some may only become evident later in life.

Intrauterine Factors

Foot deformities such as clubfoot, cleft foot, and many more develop in utero. Positional foot deformities may also result from constraining factors during pregnancy.

Environmental Factors

Environmental factors such as poor-fitting shoes or trauma/injury to the feet can also result in foot and ankle deformities that require specialized diagnosis and treatment.

Diagnosis of Rare and Complex Foot Deformities

Some foot deformities are straightforward to recognize while others are best diagnosed by a specialist. Rare and complex foot deformities may be diagnosed using one or more of the following:

Prenatal Ultrasound Screenings

Certain rare and complex foot deformities develop early enough and are physically distinctive enough to be noticed at a prenatal ultrasound screening. In such cases, the prenatal medical team can be proactive in educating the parents and developing a prospective treatment plan.

Physical Examination and Medical History

The foot deformity diagnosis process usually begins with your doctor or surgeon asking questions about your or your child’s medical history followed by a physical examination of the affected foot or feet. The examination may involve checking the range of motion and function while standing and walking.

Imaging Tests

In some cases, your doctor or surgeon may order diagnostic imaging tests to gain a more comprehensive understanding of the foot deformity. Such tests may include X-rays, a CT scan, ultrasound, or MRI.

Treatment Options for Rare and Complex Foot Deformities

Generally speaking, early diagnosis and treatment of rare and complex foot deformities will result in the most favorable outcomes. If you suspect that your child may have a foot or ankle deformity, it is essential to have it looked at as soon as possible.

Non-Surgical Treatments

Some rare and complex foot deformities can be effectively treated using conservative, non-surgical interventions. Depending on the condition, these may include bracing, serial casting, orthotic devices, physical therapy, and/or stretching.

In cases where surgical correction is necessary, non-surgical treatment leading up to it can sometimes result in a less invasive procedure.

Surgical Treatments

Surgical treatments for rare and complex foot deformities vary significantly depending on the condition being treated. They may involve foot structure corrections, lengthening or shortening procedures, tendon transfers, external fixation, or other specialized approaches and techniques. Speak directly with your foot and ankle surgeon to learn more about the surgical treatment plan they believe will be most appropriate based on your or your child’s specific needs and circumstances.

Rehabilitation and Follow-Up Care

Proper rehabilitation and follow-up care are critical following the surgical treatment of rare and complex foot deformities. This may include physical therapy and stretching exercises as well as the long-term monitoring and management of moderate and severe deformities. In rare cases, patients may need to undergo multiple surgeries to restore the highest possible level of function to their affected foot or feet. Proper rehabilitation is vital after each and every procedure. Speak directly with your pediatrician, primary care or surgeon for more information.

Ready to effectively treat and resolve your or your child’s rare and complex foot deformity? Contact the leading team of surgeons at Modern Orthopaedics of New Jersey today!

 Our Awarded

Dr. Einul Chowdhury, DPM, AACFAS


Meet Dr. Chowdhury

Dr. Einul Chowdhury is a Board Qualified Foot & Ankle Surgeon that specializes in: lower extremity trauma, sports medicine, minimally invasive surgery, & limb deformity correction. Learn more about specialties, training and treatment philosophy by visiting Dr. Ein's full profile page.

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