Keeping Calm and Carrying On

When Clover was born, her grandmother Dawn could tell something was wrong immediately. One foot was severely turned in, and clubfoot ran in the family. Boys are about twice as likely to develop clubfoot as girls are, and risk factors include family history. If either of the parents or their other children have had clubfoot, the baby is more likely to have it as well. About one out of every 1,000 newborns will have clubfoot.

Dawn was referred to St. Christopher’s Hospital orthopedics department and Joseph M. Rosenblatt, DO, when she was barely a month old. 

"They put a cast on the leg first, and we’d go back every couple weeks, and they would switch the cast as she grew. I was amazed at how much the foot turned back in just the first two months. She was in the leg cast for three months, then we went to braces across both feet with a bar in the middle,” Dawn said.

Clover had to wear the brace for 23 hours a day, only taking it off for an hour daily for bathing. Over time, Clover only had to wear it eight or nine hours a day when she was sleeping. 

"She did really well with the brace, and her muscles were moving well," Dawn said. "Then Dr. Rosenblatt suggested she might be a suitable candidate for a new type of shoe brace, with no bar in the middle. I called it her magic shoe, and she did not mind wearing it."

The shoe brace, also called an orthotic, gave Clover a little more freedom of movement compared to the brace with the bar. Most children have to wear braces for five years, but Clover did so well, Dr. Rosenblatt believed she would be done wearing it by age three.

Clover smiling


"She had no setbacks with the shoe brace. When it was time for bed, she could walk up the stairs to her crib. I trust Dr. Rosenblatt completely, so when he said it might be good for her, we believed him. You just get a sense with him that he knows what he’s doing, and I feel in good hands with him. She will always have some intoeing, but you can’t tell from watching her that there’s anything wrong," Dawn said. 

Taking on Clover’s care was challenging at times for Dawn, especially protecting Clover from a potential fall. "There was a time I was putting Clover to bed with braces, and I was worried for her. But I was probably more uncomfortable than she was. She is a resilient kid, and we have managed just the two of us all this time." 

At a recent appointment, Clover was discharged as a patient of Dr. Rosenblatt, as she is now running and walking without pain.

Clover also sees a St. Christopher’s general pediatrician, Noah Daniel Buboltz, MD. "I could not speak more highly of him; he’s very friendly and really makes you feel comfortable. He plays music for the kids. We call him Dr. B, and Clover loves him."

Dawn said she could not be happier with the results of Clover’s care from Dr. Rosenblatt and Dr. Buboltz. "They were great about giving instruction, and we just had to follow what they said. I am so glad we did."