Any malformation or distortion of part of the body. Deformities may be congenital (present from birth), or they may be acquired as a result of injury, disorder, or disuse. Most congenital deformities are relatively rare. Among the more common are club-foot ( talipes) and cleft lip and palate. Injuries that can cause deformity include burns, torn muscles, and broken bones. Disorders that may cause deformity include nerve problems, some deficiencies, such as rickets, and Paget’s disease of the bone. Disuse of a part of the body can lead to deformity through stiffening and contracture of unused muscles or tendons. Many deformities can be corrected by orthopaedic techniques, plastic surgery, or exercise.


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