Empowered by Community
Yvette Arguelles Caicedo knew in her gut that something wasn’t right. Her son Cristiano, born with bilateral clubfoot, was adjusting to his fifth set of casts. Although the treatment appointment was 18 hours ago, he was still crying, still upset, and Yvette was at a loss for ideas on how to help him get through the pain.
The initial diagnosis was shocking and Yvette prepared herself for Cristiano to spend his life in a wheelchair. She couldn’t find a lot of information about clubfoot and devoured a few books that just scared her more. She was full of questions, but every time she would get in front of a doctor at an appointment, she would forget every one of them.
Nervous and feeling very alone, Yvette sat helpless as her son continued to cry. First, she tried to contain her emotions and call a 1-800 number and ask questions, receiving little help. She then called her pediatrician, who suggested she take him to the ER to remove the casts. Looking back, Yvette understands that this day was a turning point.
A Chance Meeting
She met a nurse who was familiar with clubfoot and had treated patients with the condition before. “You should join a support group,” she said.
Yvette discovered and joined a Facebook group for parents of children with clubfoot. She started posting pictures, and then help and support was instant. She started asking questions about the timing of surgeries, posting pictures of her son’s feet, and worked up the courage to start asking questions.
At the next casting appointment, Yvette was bolder, more confident. She sought second opinions, started made informed decisions, took charge of her son’s treatment. The family now sees a new physician, and Cristiano’s clubfeet are now fully corrected and he is happily on 12-14 hour BNB wear. With each treatment, he cries less and less.
Yvette is keenly aware that the resources and support she has here in the US are luxuries that not every parent is fortunate enough to have. When she found out about MiracleFeet’s mission to help parents of children born with clubfoot receive help and support to get their children the best treatment possible, she knew she had to help.
We are so grateful for parents like Yvette who are using their empowered voices to help others.