Clubfoot is a congenital birth defect that results in the internal rotation of one or both feet. With a new case occurring in every 750 births and over one million untreated cases worldwide, clubfoot is one of the leading causes of disability. Left untreated, clubfoot results in physical deformity and social stigma, which can have detrimental impacts on the quality of life. The miraclefeet brace is a low-cost (<$20) foot abduction brace designed to treat clubfoot using the non-surgical Ponseti method. With proper compliance, treatment success rates of 95% can be achieved.
Corporate Partners: Clarks, Suncast Corp
The Challenge: To design a low-cost foot abduction brace that delivers the same quality of care that can be expected from the best, and most expensive, braces on the market.
Big Idea: The miraclefeet brace was designed with children and their parents in mind. Specifically, we aimed to develop a brace that was tamper-proof and easy-to-use, simplifying the daily bracing struggle that caregivers endure so as to improve compliance rates in the 5-year treatment process. This lightweight, child-friendly design includes easy-on, easy-off accessibility through detachable shoes and built-in stability for standing and walking.
Current Status: We are currently conducting a final round of high-resolution machined prototype testing prior to soft tooling to injection mold 100+ units for extended testing at several miraclefeet clinics worldwide (Brazil, India, Mexico, Nicaragua, South Africa). We hope to start full-scale manufacturing in early 2014.
Team: Ian Connolly, Jeffrey Yang (and former Extreme team members Michael Ahdoot, Katie Jaxheimer)
This project has been supported, in part, by a global health innovation grant from the NIH, known as C-IDEA.