Bowed Legs: Causes, Symptoms And Treatment

by Administrator 6. February 2017 04:09

Bowed Legs, or Genu Varum, is a structural deformity of the lower limbs in which the knees are pulled apart while the feet are joined together.  It is commonly observed in toddlers and is evident due to the large spacing between the legs as well as knees. The condition may affect either one or both the legs and usually subsides on its own by the age of 3-4 years.

Causes

  • Congenital defects- Folding of the legs in the mother’s womb may lead to bow leg formation in babies
  • Rickets- A bone disease that occurs due to deficiency of Vitamin D or Calcium and phosphorus
  • Blount’s Disease- Abnormality of the growth plate in tibia
  • Fractures of the leg that have not healed properly

Symptoms

  • Visibly deformed legs that may tend to curve outwards
  • Abnormal gait
  • Symptoms are more apparent  when the child walks or stands
  • Intoeing or inward turning of the feet while walking
  • Tendency to trip while walking
  • If the condition persists in adolescence, it may out stress on the hips, knee, ankle and pelvis

Diagnosis

  • Detailed physical examination of the child, birth history and medical condition, if any
  • The doctor may check if the bowing is symmetrical (occurs in both legs equally) or asymmetrical (one leg bends more than the other). This is done by measuring the distance between the knees while making the child lie on the stomach
  • X-ray imaging may be required to assess the bone structure and underlying cause
  • Blood tests may be done to check for conditions like Rickets

Treatment

  • Regular clinical assessments every few months may be recommended to keep a check on the progress of the condition
  • Bracing of the legs may be helpful if Blount’s Disease is diagnosed during early childhood
  • Specific medication may be prescribed to control effects of Rickets

Surgical intervention may be needed in case the condition worsens and does not subside with conservative treatment. This may include:

  • Tibial Osteotomy- Realigning or reshaping the shin bone and holding it in correct anatomical position using pins, plates, screws etc.
  • Guided Growth- Surgical procedure to stop the growth of the healthy side of the shin bone to facilitate recovery on the damaged side of the leg
  • Physical therapy may be helpful post-surgery to regain strength and stability of the leg
  • The child may be advised to use walker or crutches for some time to avoid weight bearing

For treatment of Bowed Legs and other orthopedic conditions, visit OrthoTexas. To schedule an appointment with the orthopedic surgeons in McKinney, TX, you can call at (972) 727 – 9995.

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Mallet Toe: Orthopedic McKinney, TX

by Administrator 25. November 2016 17:51

Mallet Toe refers to a deformity of the distal interphalangeal (DIP) joint located near the tips of the toe. The condition causes the distal end of the toe to start pointing downwards and the middle portion of the toe to rise upwards. It can affect any of the small toes and hamper the normal functionality of the foot. Mallet Toe is most commonly observed in women.

Causes

  • Wearing tight shoes may contract and shorten the tendons that hold the foot joints. It may also cause rigidness of the supporting muscles which do not allow the toe to straighten
  • Use of high heels for prolonged period of time
  • Rheumatoid Arthritis
  • Previous foot injuries may damage the muscular balance of the joint or alter the shape of the bones

Symptoms

  • Visibly deformed or clawed toe that begins to curl towards the floor
  • Bunions may also be formed
  • Pain in the toe, particularly while wearing closed shoes
  • Calluses may develop as the middle of the toe rises like a bump and rubs against the shoe
  • Redness and swelling may be seen
  • Change in gait as the toe hurts while walking

Diagnosis

  • Physical examination of the affected toe
  • Details of past injuries, type of shoes worn, duration spent standing or walking, medical conditions etc. may be taken into consideration
  • X-ray scan of the joint can reveal changes in the bone and soft tissue structure
  • The orthopedic doctor may attempt to straighten the toe manually to check if the deformity is rigid or flexible
  • Doppler ultrasound test may be conducted to check the flow of blood to the joint

Treatment
In case of flexible deformity, Mallet Toe can be treated by conservative methods. For rigid deformities and those caused due to other associated conditions, surgery may be required.

Treatment options may include:

  • The patient may be advised to wear open footwear, low heels, soft soled shoes that allow the toes to stretch and do not rub against them
  • Customized shoes with increased foot arches or shoe inserts may be recommended
  • Pain killers and anti-inflammatory medicines may be prescribed to reduce swelling and tenderness
  • Buddy taping- The deformed toe can be taped with the adjoining one to provide support and allow it to straighten
  • Certain orthotic devices like toe splints or caps can protect and keep the toe straight

Exercises

  • The patient may gently pull the deformed toe in a straight position and hold it for some time. This exercise can be done repeatedly to alter the shape of the toe.
  • Towel curls- Place a towel on the floor and try to crumple it with the toes. This is a an effective exercise that can strengthen the tendons and restore joint flexibility

Surgery

  • Surgical release of the tendons that cause the toe to bend
  • Arthroplasty- A part of bone may be removed from the toe joint to correct the deformity
  • Arthrodesis- Surgical fusion of the joint which allows new bone mass to grow
  • Physical therapy may be recommended after both surgical and conservative treatment to help restore joint functionality.

The foot specialists at OrthoTexas provide complete treatment for Mallet Toe and other medical conditions. Patients in McKinney, TX can call at (972) 727 – 9995 to schedule an appointment.

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Orthopedic Treatment For Collarbone Fracture

by Administrator 28. July 2014 10:47

One of the most important bones of the body is the collar bone and its function is to secure our arms to our bodies by connecting the shoulder blade or scapula to the breastbone or sternum. Most of the strength and range of motion, which all of us expect from our shoulder joint, is possible largely due to the collar bone. Even a simple activity like raising the hands involves the use of the collar bone. Needless to say, any kind of injury to the collar bone can potentially take away a lot of strength and stability from your shoulder joint and remarkably reduce its range of motion. Collar bone fractures are particularly painful and debilitating. The collar bone being long is vulnerable to enduring a fracture is the middle. In rare cases, collar bone fractures might also occur at the inner third or outer third regions of the collar bone.

Causes

There are a number of factors which can contribute to a case of collar bone fracture. The most common ones are –

  • Any strong impact directly to the middle of the collar bone, which causes a fracture in the middle third region of the bone.
  • Any strong impact to the breastbone or sternum, which causes an inner third collar bone fracture.
  • Any strong impact on the side or top of the shoulder joint, which results in outer third collar bone fracture.
  • Falls from a height or physical injuries can also cause the collar bone to fracture.

Symptoms

The usual symptoms which are found in people affected by collar bone fracture include swelling and a feeling of tenderness to touch at the affected region. Movement of the shoulder or arm usually results in acute pain and a significant amount of localized bruising can also be spotted. In severe cases, the collar bone might visually look deformed from the outside.

Treatment

Diagnosis starts with a physical examination, accompanied with diagnostic tests like x-rays. With complete rest and effectively immobilization of the affected regions, healing can occur naturally over a period of time. Orthopedic doctors often tend to fully diagnose the problem by asking the patient about the history and nature of pain to determine the exact cause and severity of the problem. For extreme cases, there can be the need to carry out express surgical repair. In these cases, the surgical procedure is followed by a period of targeted physical therapy to restore the range of motion.

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