Objectives To examine maternal attitudes towards prenatal diagnosis of idiopathic clubfoot and to determine the incidence of false-negative ultrasound examinations. Methods Surveys were mailed to mothers of patients with clubfoot born between 2000 and 2007 who were treated at either Sinai Hospital of Baltimore or Orthopaedic Hospital Speising. Exclusion criteria were underlying syndrome, genetic abnormality and multiple pregnancy. The survey asked the mother whether she had had any ultrasound examinations before her child was born, whether any of these had shown clubfoot, and whether she would have preferred to find out about her child's clubfoot before birth or after birth. Results Mothers completed 220 (USA, 105 surveys; Austria, 115 surveys) of 401 mailed surveys. The prenatal detection rate was 60% in the USA compared with 25% in Austria (P = 0.001). Overall, 74% of mothers indicated a preference for prenatal diagnosis and 24% indicated a preference for postnatal diagnosis of the condition. Of 92 patients diagnosed prenatally, 96% of mothers indicated a preference for a prenatal diagnosis. Of 128 patients diagnosed postnatally, 58% of mothers indicated a preference for prenatal diagnosis, 38% for postnatal diagnosis and 4% were undecided. Conclusions The diagnosis of clubfoot is still often missed during routine ultrasound examination. When a prenatal diagnosis is made, most mothers appreciate having this information. However, when prenatal diagnosis is missed, a significant proportion of mothers seem to accept the false-negative diagnosis retrospectively.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Radiological and Ultrasound Technology
- Reproductive Medicine
- Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging
- Obstetrics and Gynecology