Morphometric study of muscle in congenital idiopathic club foot

Pathol Res Pract. 1989 Nov;185(5):790-4. doi: 10.1016/S0344-0338(89)80241-9.


In congenital idiopathic club foot gross morphological changes cannot be assessed in muscle tissue by conventional histopathological techniques. Since, however, recent studies have indicated the presence of neuromuscular anomalies with preponderance of Type 1 fibres in this condition, we have performed histochemical, morphometric and electron microscopic examinations in muscle biopsies of 23 patients with congenital idiopathic club foot deformity. The age of the patients varied between 6 weeks and 12 years, respectively. Muscle biopsy was taken mainly from the flexor group of the affected leg(s) during the surgical correction of the anomaly. No gross pathological changes could be found by histochemical analysis. Morphometric study, however, disclosed abnormalities in the composition of the fibre types. The most prominent change was the percentual increase in Type 1 and decrease in Type 2 fibres in almost all the cases. Electron microscopically, only minor fine structural changes could be found. Since these changes could be assessed soon after birth just as in the later course, they cannot be regarded as the consequence of the abnormal position of the leg. More probably, Type 1 fibre predominance is related etiologically to the congenital club foot deformity.

MeSH terms

  • Biopsy
  • Child
  • Child, Preschool
  • Clubfoot / pathology*
  • Humans
  • Infant
  • Microscopy, Electron
  • Muscles / pathology*
  • Muscles / ultrastructure