Undergoing Clubfoot Treatment in Uganda
“I could not hold back my tears when the nurses handed me my baby and told me that he had a disability. I remember them telling me that it was a correctable disability, but from that moment whatever they said did not matter. I was in shock. I just wanted a perfect baby.”
This was Alexa’s response when her third child and first son, Meros, was born with bilateral clubfoot in Uganda. Nurses immediately referred the family to a nearby hospital for clubfoot treatment. However, the orthopedic department there was sorely lacking in resources. Before they made the trip to another national referral hospital, a chance meeting with a stranger ended with advice to try out the clubfoot clinic at Comprehensive Rehabilitation Services Uganda (CoRSU).
Meros was three weeks old when he first arrived at CoRSU. For the next five weeks his feet were corrected through serial manipulation and casting before a small tenotomy was performed to release his Achilles tendons. Alexa found it incredibly comforting to know that Meros’s treatment was free of charge. Without the financial stress, Alexa found it easier to be present through the process to support her son. Alexa said the other mothers at the clinic to be especially helpful, stating, “[They] encouraged me a lot every week which kept me going and strong for my son.”
The day of the tenotomy is still vivid in Alexa’s memory. She was scared for her little boy but thankful when all went well. The incision area has healed and Meros is now in the bracing phase to help maintain the corrected position. According to Alexa, Meros did not like the braces at first. However, she knows struggling withbracing is a small price to pay to, in her words, “Have a mechanical engineer in the house someday.” We at MiracleFeet are so grateful for our partners at CoRSU and are celebrating all of the parents out there with similar hopes and dreams for their children.