Comparison of three heel cord surgeries in children with cerebral palsy

Jack R. Engsberg, Donna J. Oeffinger, Sandy A. Ross, Hank D. White, Chester M. Tylkowski, Perry L. Schoenecker

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

11 Scopus citations


This nonrandomized prospective descriptive study compared outcomes of three isolated heel cord surgeries in children with spastic diplegia cerebral palsy (CP): (1) heel cord advancement (HCA), (2) heel cord lengthening according to Vulpius (HCL-V), and (3) heel cord lengthening according to White (HCL-W). Thirty-two children were tested prior to and approximately 1 year after undergoing one of the three surgeries. Objective measures were collected for ankle passive and active range of motion, gross motor function measure (GMFM), and gait. All surgeries indicated significant improvements in end range passive and active ankle dorsiflexion, GMFM, and dorsiflexion during gait. Gait speed was significantly improved for the HCA group, but appeared to be the result of maturity. Gait speed for the HCL-V and HCL-W groups was unchanged. The study was the first to directly compare three heelcord-lengthening surgeries.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)322-333
Number of pages12
JournalJournal of Applied Biomechanics
Issue number4
StatePublished - Nov 2005


  • Equinus deformity
  • Gait
  • Gross motor function measure


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