Cost-effectiveness of the Ponseti method for treatment of clubfoot in Pakistan

Hamidah Hussain, Aziza Moiz Burfat, Lubna Samad, Fayez Jawed, Muhammad Amin Chinoy, Mansoor Ali Khan

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

8 Scopus citations


Background: Clubfoot is disabling, with an incidence of 0.9/1,000 live births to 7/1,000 live births. It affects mobility, productivity, and quality of life. Patients are treated surgically or non-surgically using the Ponseti method. We estimated the cost per patient treated with both methods and the cost-effectiveness of these methods in Pakistan. Methods: Parents of patients treated, either surgically or with the Ponseti method, at the Indus Hospital's free program for clubfoot were interviewed between February and May 2012. We measured the direct and indirect household expenditures for pre-diagnosis, incomplete treatment, and current treatment until the first brace for Ponseti method and the first corrective surgery for surgically treated patients. Hospital expenditure was measured by existing accounts. Results: Average per-patient cost was 349 for the Ponseti method and 810 for patients treated surgically. Of these, the Indus hospital costs were 170 the for Ponseti method and 452 for surgically treated patients. The direct household expenditure was 154 and 314 for the Ponseti and surgical methods, respectively. The majority of the costs were incurred pre-diagnosis and after inadequate treatment, with the largest proportion spent on transportation, material, and fee for service. The Ponseti method is shown to be the dominant method of treatment, with an incremental cost-effectiveness ratio of 1,225. Conclusions: The Ponseti method is clearly the treatment of choice in resource-constrained settings like Pakistan. Household costs for clubfoot treatment are substantial, even in programs offering free diagnostics and treatments and may be a barrier to service utilization for the poorest patients.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2217-2222
Number of pages6
JournalWorld Journal of Surgery
Issue number9
StatePublished - 2014
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery
  • General Medicine


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